Thursday, December 30, 2021
Saturday, February 20, 2021
It has been almost a full year that we have been navigating life and education in a pandemic. We are finally able to welcome students back into our school building this Wednesday. Some students have not been in our building since last March. Some have never been in our building. As a school leader, I have the privilege of reminding and supporting our amazing educators of their ability to navigate this next phase in our work this year.
This week I reflected on how best to do this.
I found peace and comfort in the words of Fred Rogers, and his message to "look for the helpers". Take a listen (only 1 minute).
Thursday, December 31, 2020
Six years ago I learned about the one-word initiative Jon Gordon wrote about in his book, "One Word that will Change Your Life" that encourages people to identify one word that will be their driving force for the year (instead of a list of resolutions that are often hard to accomplish/attain).I selected the following words over the years: believe (2016), wonder (2017), trust (2018), empower (2019) and see in 2020.
Wednesday, November 11, 2020
Thursday, July 9, 2020
Today I was reminded of WHY I do this work. I was talking with some teachers about school reopening. There are so many unknowns and so many fears that we all are feeling- all warranted and valid. I am grateful that I work with educators who are willing to share their honest concerns and work together to do what is best for our students.
I am committed to creating a safe space for educators. I want them to remain passionate about their work, love their students, and to grow their practice. This is especially important as we continue to navigate the many unknowns of this pandemic. I truly believe that when educators are in a “safe place” to share their thinking and feel genuinely supported all of our children will get what they need. Educators have such amazing minds and sometimes the many demands of the work can get in the way. I am committed to working through these barriers with educators every day. I lead with my heart and will never stop doing that. This is a blessing and a curse, but in the end, I know that my honesty and love for all things teaching and learning will make a difference someday. We are in this together. We can never forget this. EVER. This is why we're going to be ok.
Below is a brief video I shared with our staff today at lunchtime (that was a part of an update newsletter). I hope it inspires others to do the same.
Sunday, January 19, 2020
There is a little boy in the classroom that is next to my office that has the brightest smile and gives the tightest hugs. He has the power to take my mind away from the intensity of the problems of the day and remind me of what matters most in my school- relationships.
A few weeks ago he asked to take his earned break with me and I was honored. He came into my office, we played with magnetic shapes and designed a house with a long driveway, and then he gave me a list of supplies to purchase for our next break together. He asked for balloons, straws, and tape (and possibly some glue). I had no idea what he wanted to make and he said he wanted to surprise me.
This past week I finally had all of the supplies and on Thursday he came to my office to create his masterpiece. I already had a “big kid” in my office, so the little boy took on the role of teaching both me and the “big kid” what to do. He instructed each of us to get two balloons and two straws. We helped one another one step at a time, and we ended up making a fidget tool that looks like the drawing below.
This little boy was filled with so much pride and excitement. He was jumping up and down- it seemed like he couldn’t believe it actually worked! Not only had he taught me how to make his creation, but he also taught a big kid (who was otherwise having a tough day).
I am so grateful that I had this experience. This is a moment of “unutterable fulfillment which cannot be completely explained by those symbols called words. Their meaning can only be articulated by the inaudible language of the heart.” - Martin Luther King, Jr.
I am committed to the very challenging work of being an educational leader and I will continue to prioritize moments like this with students (and staff).
Monday, December 30, 2019
I have always been a go-getter and a worker. I decided to take 6 vacation days to enjoy winter break with my family this year and I have to admit that I don't like where my mind is going. I am exhausted- actually I'm burnt out. I have always loved education and I have been committed to students, teachers, and families that I serve, but this vacation I have been thinking about my future differently. I'm not trying to be negative, but I am trying to be honest. I have been missing out on so much of my life because I have been working too much. I should be able to work hard and still be present for my family and friends. I don't want to miss any more of my children's basketball games or be cooking dinner at 8:00pm because I was working late.
I need to refocus in 2020 and that is why my #oneword2020 is see. I hope that seeing will allow me to be more present for others and for myself.