In our first back-to-school meeting last week, our faculty was challenged to think about our attitude for the new year. When the two Sumter school districts merged into one last year, there were many fears and frustrations as everyone adjusted to doing things in new, unfamiliar ways. But that difficult first year of transition is over, and everyone is eager now to focus on making this year successful for our students.
So after an inspiring “welcome back” speech from our principal, everyone was given a stress ball (hey, the most difficult part of the transition may be over, but no one expects this year to be easy!) and asked to choose one word to define our focus for the year. One word that sums up what we want our students and co-workers to notice about us, one word that we can use to remind ourselves – as we squeeze that rubber ball and take deep calming breaths – what is truly important this year.
The word I chose is Yes. That one simple word represents my desire to assist and support our teachers this year as we begin implementing the Common Core standards in our school. So many times in the past I’ve had to tell them “no” – either by word or deed – when they needed something because my time was too taken up with conducting Library classes. This year I want to be there with resources, with ideas, with collaborative teaching plans, and with technology innovations to empower them in their classrooms and beyond.
Whatever a teacher asks me for this year, I want to be able to say Yes to it. Technical difficulties with your printer? Yes, I’ll come down and look at it right away. Enough folk tales for every student in your class to have one? Yes, I’ll bring them down to your classroom. A Promethean flipchart to give students practice classifying different types of rocks? Yes, I’ll help you create that. A website to help students learn more about the Greek and Roman gods? Yes, I’ll find one for you.
Yes, it will be a juggling act at times, but yes, it will be worth it to help our teachers accomplish their goals.
What’s your word this year? I’d love to hear about it in the comments.Image: ‘Friday, 13th, Nov‘ Found on flickrcc.net