Principal’s Corner

It has been a few weeks since we have included a new Habit of Mind (HOM). The fantastic PTO website has a link on the front page which connects to previously shared Habits of Mind. I would encourage you to discuss the HOM’s as a family and with any caregivers that interact with your children. It is also very important to have conversations about the HOM’s with your children and to model how you demonstrate each Habit of Mind in your personal and professional  lives. It is also helpful to share how you were able to develop each HOM over the years. We are not born with these habits, we must learn them. Children make sense of their world through stories, so share your stories!

The Habit of Mind for this week is:

Listening with Understanding and Empathy

What is it? –  Paraphrasing, attending, seeking other’s feelings

Sounds like – “So you’re suggesting….”   “Your idea is…..”  “You’re upset because…..”  You’re excited about…….”

Looks like – Facing one another. Eye contact. Nodding.

Feels like – This person cares enough to really listen to me. Comforting, Trusting, Vulnerable

We want students to learn to devote their mental energies to another person and to invest themselves in their partner’s ideas. We want students to learn to hold in abeyance their own values, judgments, opinions, and prejudices so they can listen to and entertain another person’s thoughts. This is a complex skill requiring the ability to monitor one’s own thoughts while at the same time attending to a partner’s words. Listening in this way does not mean we can’t disagree with someone. Good listeners try to understand what other people are saying. In the end, they may disagree sharply, but because they have truly listened, they know exactly the nature of the disagreement.

“The simple act of paying attention can take you a long way”. Keanu Reeves
“If you want to be listened to, you should put in time listening.” Marge Piercy

Information on Habits of Mind are taken from the book Habits of Mind by Costa and Kallick.

Sincerely, Warren Blair

Thursday, December 15 – 2:30 – 4:00 – Japanese Food Fair
TerraCycle Drive – Dec. 13, 14, 15 in Lobby – Our Green Team of parents is working with the TerraCycle’s program for recycling cosmetic product containers (such as lipstick tubes, makeup compacts, mascara tubes, deodorant containers, etc)  and oral care products (think used toothbrushes, toothpaste tubes, floss containers, etc):
December 20 and 21 – Our Green Team of parents is doing a gently used clothes and coat drive in the lobby.

December 23  – January 2  – Winter Break – Students return on January 3.

“Be careful around those younger than you. It is surprising how much of an impact a word or action can make on them.” Sarah, age 12

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