The other morning a crazy thing happened. I was in Emerson's room after she woke up, trying to get her to stand still for at least two minutes so I could get her dressed. She went over to the door and reached up and turned on the light. And then she looked at me in shock. The night before, I swear she could not reach that light, and now, just 12 hours later, she was able to stretch her body and reach it. She proudly exclaimed to me, "Mommy, I'm big!"
In that moment, I swallowed hard and worked hard to fight back my tears. Is it possible to plug up your tear ducts?! And when Emerson ran back to me and jumped in my lap excited about her new ability, I said, "But I don't want you to grow up. I want you to stay little." She giggled and told me that she was growing up and getting bigger. And then she at least gave me those few minutes of snuggling in my arms since she still is small enough to curl up in a ball in my lap. I closed my eyes and remembered how it was not so long ago that she was actually a tiny baby curled up in my lap. And then, suddenly, she was up out of my lap and bopping around her room talking to her stuffed animals.
I started to think about my wish to keep her little. And I started thinking about our students and how we get them when they seem so little as baby kindergartners and then watch them grow to be the big 4th graders. Do we sometimes have the same mentality that I had with Emerson that morning? Do we watch them grow and change overnight, and wish that they would not grow up so fast? Do we do things for them, not even realizing that we are doing it. I just wonder if in school we sometimes let the Peter Pan Effect slip in. While no one wants to rush and force kids to grow up faster than they already do, I just wonder if sometimes we hold them back, we help when our help is not needed, we jump in when they don't need us, we try to keep them little? Do we say we have high expectations, yet in the moment, during the rush of the day, we lower them a little because we want everyone to get to the next task. We want everyone to feel like they have been successful?
Without realizing it, are we trying to keep our students from growing up or are we doing everything we can to help them fly on their own?
Over the break, I tried to give myself some more time to read. Almost finished with reading The War I Finally Won and I am still listening to When Breathe Becomes Air. Funny story about me always having a book with me. I went to get my hair done on Sunday and I had the book The War I Finally Won with me. The hairdresser asked what I was reading, and I replied with a smile...well a kid's book, I am the principal and I try to read books that the kids would be reading. I told her it was an historical fiction book about World War II, and she immediately started talking about how she remembered reading the historical fiction book Number the Stars when she was in school. She talked about how much she liked reading that book and it was the one that she really remembered from school. I always love how certain books stick with people...hmmm...maybe another blog post for another day! I am looking forward to starting to listen to The Power of Moments, also on Audible...loving using that app! And I read another Melissa Stewart book, Beneath the Sun, in preparation for her visit in another week. Will be delivering books to teachers this week to read to your classes.
Events this week:
Monday - FloRo Picture Retake Day and Happy Birthday to Melissa!
Tuesday - Teachers from Ruggles Lane visiting FloRo all day
Wednesday - Kindergarten chorus at 9:30
Thursday - Student Council Meeting @ 8:00
Friday - Gift of Failure book club @ 8:20, Elementary Curriculum Half Day, 12:15 dismissal
Saturday - Holiday Fair at the PAC and MSS!
Great things I noticed last week:
- Mrs. Spiczka's morning and afternoon K classes had some planned field trips to my office! They see me in their room a lot, but they wondered what my office was like so I invited them to take a tour, and then they all got to sign the SPARK Wall of Fame!
- Getting excited about Melissa Stewart coming to spend two days at our school and I saw this bulletin board pop up!
- Peeked into the gym and saw 3rd graders having fun on scooters.
- 4th graders were having to do some math thinking in MakerSpace as they were shopping for their supplies to make some interesting creations. Definitely funny to see some toys, or at least parts of them, that used to be in my house, now being used to construct!
- Officer Mead's dog, Miranda, has recently completed her training and is now an official therapy dog. We are excited that soon she will be able to help us at school. They happened to stop by and it was amazing the affect Miranda had on one student who was upset and having a tough time. Just a few minutes of petting and snuggle time and the child went from tears to smiles.
- Flo made an appearance Wednesday morning to wish everyone Happy Thanksgiving! She gave out lots of hugs and high fives to students and adults!
Here's a great post written by a teacher after seeing the movie "Wonder": http://www.spedtales.com/a-teachers-perspective-on-wonder/