So we had our student-led celebration of learning conferences last week in the Lower School, and what a celebration it was! Not only was the day itself a true celebration for our entire community, the lead up to it was magical as well, as teachers, students and parents worked collaboratively together to prepare for this important showcase.
As the students left for home in the afternoon before conference day, there were so many comments like, “Mr. Kerr, I’m so excited to show my parents how much I am learning in writing and math!”, and “My parents are going to be so proud of me, and you know what Mr. Kerr, I’m really proud of myself too!”, and heartwarmingly, one little boy said, “I love school so much and I can’t wait to tell my parents all the reasons why”.
On the day after the event it was the parents’ turn to flood my inbox with positive comments, mostly about how much they enjoyed the opportunity to partner with the school, how impressed they are with our teachers, and most importantly, how grateful and inspired they are with the amount of growth that their child has shown throughout the year. All of these celebrations got me smiling for sure, as it was indeed a great day, but it also got me thinking about the need for us to start doing even more of this!
With much of the world slowly learning how to live with Covid, I think that we can begin to dream about ways, as a school, that we can start building a robust and vibrant on-campus community again…and celebrations will be at the heart of that. I spoke briefly in my last post about needing to get together more face to face, and how we will need to “get to know” each other again as a school community, and celebrating our teachers, our parents, and of course, our students is absolutely paramount.
Our recent student-led conference celebration proved that there is such a strong desire to reunite the school, from all sides, and when we finally do open back up to parents, creating opportunities for community involvement and community celebration will be huge. I’m so excited to get parents back on campus at some point, and honestly, the situation that we’ve all been in over the past two years has really shone a light on how important “community” really is to a school. Honestly, we just haven’t been the same without it, and I’m excited and inspired to prioritize this when we are finally able…not long now I hope 🙂
You see, In my opinion, the best schools have strong parent partnerships, and a strong, connected and family-like community. Where everyone works together to support our kids and their learning, and where we all come together to celebrate each step and milestone along the way. Our student-led conferences were a great example of that, and we can use it as a jumping off point as we look to reunite on campus in the not so distant future. In the meantime, keep looking to find ways in your classrooms or in your departments to celebrate, celebrate, celebrate, and I will do the same. Have a wonderful week ahead everyone and remember to be great for our students and good to each other.
Quote of the Week….
Remember to celebrate milestones as you prepare for the road ahead – Nelson Mandela
Inspiring Videos –
Kindness 101 – This Week – Optimism
TED Talk – The Value of Kindness at Work
TED Talk – Where Joy Hides and Where To Find It
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