Today I celebrate and appreciate my staff, and our time to collaborate and support one another. This past week my vice principal, literacy coach, and I had the opportunity to release our five kindergarten teachers to go observe a fellow colleague during her writers workshop time. We divided the students among the three of us and had a blast reading “The Kindness Quilt” to the students followed by a writing assignment. The following are photos of our time together.
I need help with my art work. It’s time for “Smarter Charts”.
Kindness is playing with my friends.
Kindness is playing on the slide.
Kindness is playing with each other.
Today, I want to CELEBRATE Nathaniel. I’ve known Nathaniel since he was in TK. This year he is a kindergartner and, as it sometimes is for boys, school is at times challenging for him. Recently, on one of my walkthroughs, I visited Nathaniel’s class. When he saw me walk into the classroom he quickly greeted me and continued to work on his assignment. I of course was glad to see him on task. During my visit I walked around the room and spoke with many students. By the time I made my way to Nathaniel, he was done with his assignment and was starting to pull out a book box. As I knelt by his side he showed me his popcorn words on a ring and read them to me. I praised his hard work and effort and I pulled out a “little” book from the book box. I asked Nathaniel if he would like to read the book to me; he shrugged his shoulders. I could tell he was a little apprehensive. I assured him I would help. I read the title and then asked him to use his finger to point to the words as he read. Well, to his surprise and mine he did, he read it! The look of total amazement on Nathaniel’s face can only be described as pure JOY. At that moment Nathaniel realized he was a reader. All he kept saying, all day, to all who would listen was, “I’m a great reader.” That day was a great day for Nathaniel and for me!
Reading a Habit of Mind
This year is a BIG year for us, we launched writers workshop K-5 and I am thrilled! As I visit classrooms I can see the changes in children as writers and teachers as teachers of writing. This initiative is close to my heart and one I have waited a long time to implement.
I was excited last year when I became the principal of a K-8 school and I was immediately approached by a first grade teacher, who looked like a student herself, asking to schedule a meeting with me to discuss balance literacy. Well, little did she know that literacy was a passion of mine. That seed grew from some professional development for interested K-3 teachers on a Saturday morning, to fourth and 5th grade teachers wanting to join in, to a K-5 commitment to implement writers workshop. While we are not yet where we want to be we are a whole lot further than we were!
So, I celebrate, celebrate, celebrate! The planning, the launch, the writing, the publishing, and the celebration!
GRACE is elegance, beauty, favor, goodwill, and mercy. I ask for God’s grace everyday.
The principalship is a difficult and rewarding profession, one I love. When I read todays word it took me back to a school I worked at and my lovely friend Bertha. On many occasions I recall going to Bertha’s desk and squeezing out a nice portion of her hand lotion called, yes you guessed it, GRACE. I would tell her, “Today is a crazy day and I need a little more grace to get through the day.” She would always respond by saying to take as much as I needed and she would remind me that it was I who had given her the lotion as a gift. We would both laugh and say, “Thank God we love what we do!” Her goodwill helped me through some tough days.