There are few moments in my life these days when I can actually say I feel like a kid again. And right up there with Christmas morning, are snow days. It’s funny because I love school; I love everything about it. But, the thrill of getting that early morning phone call telling me that school is cancelled just never gets old. Yes, it’s true, principals work on snow days, but I still LOVE them.
On Tuesday, I sat in my office during our first snow day of the school year. I finished projects that I otherwise may not have gotten to until March or April. I organized files. I checked emails. I read a few articles. I answered phones. And, still, I felt like a kid again.
When I got home I was greeted with the excited squeals of my four kids as they held their hats and gloves and boots because they had waited for me to get home to go sledding. I tossed my school bag on the floor and bundled up. As I spent the afternoon sledding with my family, I forced myself to pause and take in the excitement of the day.
As the day came to an end, I was left with happy memories of an unexpected day off from my normal school day routine. To my surprise, I was reminded that we all need to take time to play. I remembered what it means to feel like a kid again. I didn’t take myself too seriously. And, most importantly, I slowed down and enjoyed the moments.
Here is your staff update for February 19th.
Do you know what I love? Kindergartners!
Do you know what Kindergartners love? Everything!
Kindergartners have passion. They can get excited about anything and everything. They love to learn to read and write. They love to play and make friends. They just love everything we expose them to. The excitement and passion they have for learning can take them far! But imagine what happens when we combine that passion with a purpose.
A few weeks ago I read a blog post from AJ Juliani called “Why Creativity Begins with Purpose (Not Passion)”. In the post, Juliani says:
I used to think all I needed to create something that mattered was passion…I was wrong. It turns out passion might start the engine and get the creative process moving, but purpose is what takes it all the way to the destination (and beyond).
I saw this passion and purpose play out last week when, Dolly the Dolphin and I were invited to Kindergarten EdCamp. The kindergartners who delivered the invitation stood in my office jumping up and down. They told me that they had spent the last several weeks exploring lots of different ways to share information through writing. They squealed as they explained that on February 10th I could come to their classroom, with Dolly the Dolphin of course, and learn to make a newspaper; comic book; greeting card; song or poem; story book and MORE! I quickly hung up the invitation and had my little friends watch as I added “EdCamp” to my calendar.
And then the day came, the day when the passions of our youngest students were combined with purpose! These children were charged with being teachers.
Check out the video of our EdCamp highlights.
We’ve finished the first two parts of our R Factor training. It is up to us to implement what we’ve learned.
If we want to be elite we must be intentional, on purpose and skillful in our behavior. We must stop ourselves from impulsive, autopilot and resistant behaviors.
This isn’t easy.
We’re 101 days into the school year and we’re headed into conference week. When we get tired and stressed out, it is easy to allow ourselves to go below the line. But, we want to be elite. We must be relentless. We cannot allow ourselves to give up. So, now, more than ever, we must put in the effort to stay above the line.
We have worked hard on R1: Press Pause. As we practiced pausing we learned that “to pause” doesn’t mean to ignore an event but to instead give ourselves time to gain the clarity and courage needed to determine our response.
This week in R Factor training we focused on R2: Get Your Mind Right. We had a lively discussion about how this part of the training impacts us. We were open and honest and not afraid to share our successes and failures. The trust that we have in each other as a staff shined through. I left the training feeling like we could accomplish anything because we work so well together.
As we move into conference week next week, let’s remember the importance of pressing pause and getting our minds right.
Your mindset is the internal mental state that affects first how you see and then how you respond to events. In other words, every response is internal first and external second. –Tim Kight
How will we see the events in our lives? What story will we tell ourselves?
The mind is a battleground where your greatest struggle takes place. The thoughts that win the battle for your mind will control your life. –Tim Kight
Let’s all keep working to hold one another accountable on our relentless pursuit to be elite.
We're on our way.
Here is your staff update for February 5th.