Monday, February 15, 2016

Set Your Intentions #9

When a flower does not bloom, you fix the environment in which it grows, not the flower.    -Alexander Den Heijer

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Summer Reading

I am going to be reading these books over the summer.  In part, because it will help me in my own parenting with my 9 year old daughter and son.  Also, because it will push me to learn/grow as an educator, advocate for the young people I work with, collaborate with colleagues, and be a resource for parents at school.

If you are interested in a casual book chat, please let me know.  Here are the books:

Friday, May 30, 2014

Set Your Intentions #8

What I would really like said about me is that I dared to love.  By love I mean that condition in the human spirit so profound it encourages us to develop courage and build bridges, and then to trust those bridges and cross the bridges in attempts to reach other human beings.     
                             - Maya Angelou

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Family Engagement

Parent Engagement is something I have been thinking a lot about  this year.  The more it percolated in my mind the more I came to believe that I needed to think about it differently. This led me to think about Family Engagement.

Parent engagement is different then Family engagement. After all, our students go home to siblings that are not yet school age, Grandparents, and other relatives who may live with them. I wanted to consider a way to include and engage everyone in the entire home. Many people influence our kids and that ripple effect is far reaching. Each family member has a Voice which needs to feel worthy, to be proudly expressed, and to be accepted with loving kindness. So, how could I connect school life and family life?

What I came up with is the One Family Word challenge.

I envisioned each family having a conversation about choosing a Word to motivate and inspire them. A Word to encourage each family member to be the best they could be and a reminder for how they want to live as a Family.

The  intention was to bring Family and School together in a simple, yet meaningful way in which everyone can participate and show support for each other in our school community.

Here is the text that is in the middle of the above photo:
One Word.
That is all it takes.
To motivate. To inspire.  To transform.

Words Matter.
They can encourage.  They can empower. They can nurture. They can ignite and take you wherever you envision.
You Matter.
You can change the world. You can help others. You make a difference just by embracing your Self. You can do anything.
One Family Word.
Imagine what can be achieved with the caring support of your Family. Look at these Words selected by our families.  They are Awesome.
Our School Community
100 families and counting have taken up the One Family Word challenge. We can harness this energy and do wonderful things together.

I have no idea where this may lead or what comes next. Just that it is part of the adventure and that together we can offer caring support and personal inspiration to each individual's journey with One Family Word. 

Saturday, January 18, 2014

One Family Word

My Family has decided to come up with a Word for us.  We settled on Contagious.  As in-- our mood can rub off to each other in a positive happy-making manner or in a negative grumpy sour type of way.  We are going to make a group effort to be mindful of how our attitude/mood/frame of mind can impact other family members.  Wish us luck and I'll keep you posted.

How about you-- does your family have a word?

Tuesday, January 14, 2014


My word for 2012 was Filter. You can read about it Here. Last year my word was Carve. Read about that HereI was starting to wonder what my word for 2014 was going to be and even thought of not doing it this year at all.

And then these Tweets happened:
 Marty Stevens @martylstevens
I am on the shelf for a few weeks from running
due to tearing my inguinal tendon. #500in2014
Any suggestions for a speedy recovery?
 Jessica Lahey @jesslahey
@martylstevens rest, rest,
rest and more rest. That's a
painful one! Good luck!

So, now my Word for 2014 is a no brainer.  It absolutely, positively, without a doubt has to be Rest. Thanks, Jess, for pointing out what seems so obvious, but was not what I was wanting to do--REST

Letting my injury heal is front and center at the moment.  (A group of Educators have taken up the challenge to run 500 miles in 2014.  It is inspirational and they provide wonderful support.  However, I am woefully behind due to this setback. I will need all their encouragement once I return.  Watch our progress on Twitter at #500in2014).

After I recover and can get back to running, then I need to be especially mindful to Rest.  It seems from the moment I awake to the time my head hits the pillow I am in full throttle motion without a moment to myself. Rest to rejuvenate. To recalibrate. To replenish. Mostly, though, Rest just for the sake of Rest.

Sunday, November 03, 2013

The Invisible Boy And The Need To Be Appreciated And Accepted

Trudy Ludwig. 

She is a Hero of mine. 

There was a time when I admired athletes, movie stars, and musicians.  Not anymore.  Now I most admire KidLit authors and illustrators.  Trudy is probably on my Mount Rushmore of children's authors.
She has a new book, The Invisible Boy.  You should read it.  If you are a parent it should be on your bookshelf. If you are an Educator of any kind-- Teacher, Librarian, School Counselor--you must have access to it at your school. It needs to be in your hands and the hands of your students.
Every young person needs to experience a true sense of belonging. Every young person needs to feel valued. Every young person needs to BE appreciated and accepted for who they are. No. Matter. What.  Trudy's book addresses these important issues of Being.
So, what's the book about?  Read about it here.  And here.  Here, too.

This activity guide from Peace First may further help to foster a more complete understanding:  Inclusion/Exclusion.

There are lots of adults out there who are like the character in The Invisible Boy.  A book by Susan Cain may enhance your awareness-- Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking.

The invisible boy and others like him are easy to overlook or dismiss or disregard.  Please do not do that.  Start by reading The Invisible Boy.  It will move you to make a difference in someone's life.