Tag: #questions

Always learning

“Mom, can you pick up the kids at school on Thursday for me? Just bring them and meet me at my school so I can get them to their practice. Alex is going to get Alden from his school.”

I love every chance I get to be with the grandchildren. They are the best! Abram is the first one out and in the car. We go through our usual greetings and begin our conversation about how the day was at school.

Abram is not a typical kindergarten student, in my opinion. In fact, I would say he is one of a kind. He explains in detail all of the learning taking place in his classroom. Abram tells me about all of the long vowel sounds, the words they are learning, and the difference in the sounds of short and long vowel sounds. He moves onto math when we see his sister Aubrey trying to spot our car.

Aubrey joins in the conversation, but being in middle school, she does not have the details her brother was eager to share. Then Abram makes the best aha statement as a lesson for all in the car!

“You know when I am in my classroom; I raise my hand all of the time even if I am not sure of the answer. Other kids don’t raise their hands. I think even if I get it wrong, I am still learning, and you should always try.”

Aubrey was shaking her head, no. People will make fun of you when you are my age.

Abram, they shouldn’t because everyone is learning. You should always ask questions and try to answer them. I am going to do that all of the time. I like learning.

The influence of others has an impact on how we respond to situations. Aubrey has changed schools several times. She has only been at this school for a short time. It isn’t easy to establish yourself in a community school when kids have been together for years, and you are the new kid. She is working towards building confidence, but she is not there yet.

Abram started school new like everyone else. Plus, as I started, he is unique. He can analyze every situation and come up with his version of a solution. I am not going to say it is always right, but he is never afraid to try. He says, “Hey guys, I have an idea.”

I am so thankful for the excellent teachers they have and have had in their educational journey. They are both exceptional students who feel comfortable with their teachers and administrators. It is a beautiful blessing to have positives when you hear terrible stories of teachers. The news makes you think all teachers are doing a terrible job. Well, I know so many that are doing an exceptional job!

Encourage questions, praise risk-taking, allow innovative solutions and creativity. We do not want our children to be answers getters but solution seekers. Lift them to seek out more in learning than just getting an answer correct.

“MooMoo, how do they make shoes?” (Yes, my grandchildren call me MooMoo it is a long story, but my husband started the name thing. It’s okay. Unique, just like them!)

I am not sure which shoes you are talking about because they all use different materials. Let’s investigate and do some research!

Be the solution daily by being present in the moments to help them grow in many ways! Thank you for all you do!

Are you Fred? Friday Finds

Are you Fred? Maybe you are and you don’t know it? I try to be Fred. If you have no idea what all of this means then please pick up a copy of The Fred Factor by Mark Sanborn. It is one of my favorite staff development books!

I will not disclose the factors that make you a Fred, but it is exactly what you want in every organization and every individual’s life. These will inspire all to become more than ordinary to develop to extraordinary!

My attitude, philosophy or just my way, is to always seek to make today better than yesterday. How can we make things better for those we serve or serve with today? There are so many people, programs, books and places that come to mind when you think about special finds of inspiration, encouragement and joy.

I am the biggest fan of Walt Disney, maybe because my dad’s name was Walt and he made friends with everyone. I don’t think that is the reason I love Disney so much, but the characteristics he had made people happy! Every Sunday evening we gathered around the TV to watch Walt Disney. It was simply the best time! Then my very first trip to Walt Disney World was unbelievable.

The foundation of the work of Disney is Dream, Believe, Dare, Do and this model is how I have practiced my work in education. It is my intention to share all I have, believe in all of you as you take chances and do the work to succeed in making the future days the best ones ever! I truly believe in inspiration, encouragement, enjoying what you do, having a purpose and always finding solutions.

Begin with a few questions to get started:

Does everyone understand the role they play and that they make a difference?

Does everyone know how to invest in others and build relationships?

Does everyone know how to support each other by creating value?

These are just a few questions to start with as you look at yourself and team. Keep communication open. When communication is not clear, misunderstanding and misinformation can be the outcome. Never guess with your employees. In the current book I am reading the authors talk about having stay interviews. One of the strategies to use to keep employees instead of letting them go.

I am currently reading Love’em or Lose’em Getting Good People to Stay by Beverly Kaye and Sharon Jordan-Evans. I will be excited to share some of their 26 engagement strategies. I hope you stay in doing what you love!

Finding Focus for Solutions- Suicide Prevention

Is the Pandemic Fueling A rise In Suicide Attempts Among kids? Shots-Health News: NPR

A cluster of suicides in Las Vegas, plus a troubling rise in youth suicide attempts observed in ER nationwide, is raising fears that the pandemic is fueling a children’s mental health crisis- Read on at https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2021/02/02/962060105/child-psychiatrists-warn-that-the-pandemic-may-be-driving-up-kids-suicide-risk?s=09

Suicide Prevention is a priority for me, as I know it is for so many others. This pandemic has highlighted the importance of mental health and recognizes the need to support schools in helping to meet all of the needs of the students they serve.

If you have lost someone to suicide, you understand the emotions and questions it brings. I cannot state the names of those I have lost; I can only share the countless conversations held over decades regarding possible suicide, school-wide campaigns to prevent suicide, and strategies to use for self-care.

Running to me were two young sisters with tears flowing, arms wrapping around me and a mother looking at me with eyes full of sadness. Next to the mother was the beautiful youngest daughter, the sister who always reminded me she did not get to have me as a teacher like her sisters. Serving as Assistant Principal, for a short time before the family had moved away, I felt the pain for the family.

She had always dealt with low self-esteem, bullying, and not finding where she fits in. I had talked a great deal with all of them about strategies, things to do, and help to seek out. Why at age 16? Questions and emotions come flooding in.

It is essential to talk with, watch for signs, look for changes, monitor computer usage, and many other differences you see in your child. There is not a magic age number as this pandemic is showing suicide rates at very young ages. Please continue reading on ways you can help—advocate for more services for our children.


Monday Magic Questions

Monday’s always provide a new start to a work week with an extra cup of energy to boost you into gear! As the gears begin to turn on the commute into work it is a great time to pop in Monday Magic Questions!

Questions start the gears moving in the direction of solutions to problems you may not know to exist. Why? You have not asked the magic question!

One of my previous posts was titled. Can you help? What if the question today for everyone was, How can I help? A twist on the question but a completely different impact. If everyone in your work setting asked, how can I help? How do you react?

I have had the nickname Pollyanna and Hallmark. I do like to look at things more positively, but why not? The link I will share below will provide you with information regarding how people feel about the workplace. I have designed several professional developments regarding positive culture and climate. One of my favorites was for a new Superintendent and her team. Part of the development design for her was to create a way for people to know her message and build a strong positive relationship. We did a letter of assurances to staff. I believe, I will, I am, I have and statements to let them know leadership was in their corner.

A warning to all when you make assurances they need to be genuine and followed through on. This will make or break your climate and culture!

More Magic Monday questions will come as you continue to grow, lead and succeed! When people know you care for them, they will care for you! If you model what you want to do, they will do the same for you. Please let me know how I can help you!


Job Satisfaction Statistics (Editor’s Choice):

  • Only 20% of American employees feel enthusiastic about their jobs.
  • Only 55% of Americans are either satisfied or fully satisfied with what they do.
  • 33% of the American workers think that they are at their career’s dead end.
  • 21% of employees are very keen to change their careers.
  • 63% of the employees feel more committed to their organization when their employers treat them with respect.
  • 32% of the employees feel pressured to not take any time off.
  • 70% of the employees say they feel more driven to work hard when they get a vacation for a week or so.
  • 95% of American employers think that their financial wellness packages are effective to reach the company goals.