So last week at our new family orientation event, I ran into a joyfully bright eyed and eager second grade girl who could not have been more excited about starting her new school life at ASP. She was mostly excited about the idea of making new friends, and she went on to tell me at length all about her foolproof strategy, which made me tear up and burst out laughing all at the same time. She said, “making friends is easy for me because I just show them my heart, and that’s all you need to do!”
Of course I thanked her for sharing that, and mentioned that I was absolutely sure that her strategy would indeed work well for her this year. Sure enough, on the first day of school this week I saw her buzzing around the playground spreading joy and love and positive energy everywhere she went, with kids completely and helplessly drawn to her and following along, as she left rainbows and sunbeams all around them in her wake.
That interaction with my new student inspiration got me thinking about the notion of a growth “heartset”…which is ultimately a kindness of the heart approach to life and school. This approach is something that we could all use a little more of these days as we begin another school year. I found a wonderful definition of heartset in one of the articles that I’ve included below, and it defines it as, “an energy field of self-awareness, non-judgment (acceptance), peace, caring, positivity, giving, forgiving, and compassion that allows us to more freely and proactively be a force for good. A growth heartset creates an emotional environment in which we and the young people we teach can flourish in spite of the uncertainties and challenges that are so prevalent today.”
Well, this notion aligns perfectly with the commitments that we have made as a faculty and as a school over the past few years, and in my opinion, having a growth heartset is what quality teaching and great schools are all about. I know we’ve done incredible work with our kids over the past several years around the importance of having a growth mindset, which is a frame of mind, and now I think it’s time to extend that work to include this important notion of a growth heartset, which is a frame of the heart, and to start using the term heartset with our community.
It really is a fantastic word to use with our kids, as it encompasses so much of what we are trying to do in our approach to teaching, learning, and school. Having a growth heartset ties in so nicely with our motto of, “You Are the Weather”, and even though the culture and climate of our lower school is super solid, there is always more that we can do to enhance our daily interactions with our kids and with each other. So, my challenge to you as we begin a new year, a year that is full of promise and possibility, is to be even more like our new ray of sunshine in second grade and simply… show them your heart…that’s all you have to do! It really is a foolproof strategy. Have a wonderful week ahead everyone and remember to be great for our students and good to each other.
Quote of the Week…
When you lead with your heart, love and connection will follow
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