Have you ever told your child that he or she is smart? Of course you have! We all want our children to be self confident. We want them to feel that no mountain is too high, no valley too wide...(Thank you, Diana Ross). However, what is "Smart"? Are we born smart? Can someone learn to be smart or are some people just unfortunate victims of poor genetics?
Current Brain Research suggests that one's intelligence is not fixed. Human minds are capable of improving. People who understand this concept have developed a "Growth Mindset". The Administration and Staff at Beachland Elementary have also adopted a Growth Mindset.
What does this mean? This means that all children can achieve greatness. You may not hear a teacher say that your child is smart. Why? Because no matter where the child is in his or her development, they need to continue to grow. Therefore, instead of celebrating your child's perfectness, the mistakes will be valued. Children will be encouraged to treat their mistakes as opportunities instead of failures. The effort that your child puts into improving will be praised. This gives students the freedom to take risks that they may otherwise avoid. How many times have you been afraid to be wrong? It is this fear that keeps us from success.
As parent we can help our children have a growth mindset. Instead of telling them that they are Smart, we can teach them that we all must work to become smarter. When they complain about the difficulty of the concepts they are struggling to learn, we can show them that the struggle is ok. It is part of the process. Just as sweating it out at the gym is part of exercising our bodies.
So, in keeping with a growth mindset, I will as PTA President, encourage our PTA board to also embody this philosophy. We will constantly evaluate ourselves. We will welcome critique (but please be nice). We will strive to learn and grow in order to do better next time. We will praise every parent and volunteer for the efforts that they give. My philosophy when I began this PTA journey was,
"Live. Learn. Grow." I invite everyone reading this to join the Beachland Family as we do just that!
How was your first week of school? Did you notice anything different about the Beachland campus? I am hoping that the miles and miles of new fencing and gates gave everyone pause to consider today's topic: Safety.
My child began to grumble last spring when he saw the fences being installed. "It's like we are in a jail, all locked up." Sad, isn't it? I told him that he was looking at it all wrong. We lock our cars and houses to protect our belongings. I explained to him that since he is my most precious blessing, his protection is more important than any items locked in the house or the car. It is not what we lock in, but what we lock out!
Please consider this news story from last school year:
Last Thursday morning, a 9 year-old told her mom that a man was outside the parent pick up and drop off area at the school and tried to get her to go into his car. "That's extremely brazen in that you don't know to what extent some of these people will go to," said Officer Marcinik.
Then Thursday afternoon, a girl was riding her bicycle home from school when she was confronted at Easy Street and Sebastian Boulevard. The suspect pulled up next to the girl and said he was a police officer and that she needed to get in the car with him. He also flashed some type of silver star badge. She refused and the suspect drove off. The third incident involved children at a day care center nearby waiting for a bus when they were approached. (wptv.com)
This news story really hits home because the threat to our children is real. What we see also, is that some adult educated the children about what to do when a stranger attempts to convince them to get in a car.
Who is responsible for safety? Everyone! The school district must discourage crimes of convenience by installing gates and monitoring visitors to campus. However, parents, teachers and students all must participate to remain safe.
Is it inconvienient? ABSOLUTELY!
Do you really think it is fun for the teachers to have to keep their doors locked all day? They have to carry a key and fight the lock with every class change. Not to mention finding time to answer the door every time someone knocks.
How about the office staff who are required to ask every visitor for a driver's license and explain why it is necessary to have a visitor pass to be on campus?
The school custodians who daily must unlock and lock access gates over and over? And definite is the inconvience to parents who must suffer a long walk to the front office or a long wait through car line!
We want every parent to feel welcome on our campus. However, child predators are NOT welcome! We must ALL do our part no matter how inconvienient. We must educate our children about safety and above all else, set a good example for them. If we don't stress it's importance, how can we expect children to take it seriously?
Tomorrow begins Day 1 of R.A.P.T.O.R. for this year. Parents may sign in at the Front Office or Media Center in the mornings beginning at 8:15. After 9:00, everyone visiting campus must visit the Front Office. Don't forget your driver's license and a smile!😀
Watch your mailboxes! Letters will soon arrive that will confirm your child's teachers for this school year.
Are you excited? Perhaps a tad bit anxious? Are you still in denial that summer break is coming to an end?
Personally, I am calmly awaiting the much anticipated letter. I have said my prayers and accepted the fact that choice of teachers who get the challenge of educating my angel (the center of my universe) is beyond my control. I have been through this emotional tug-of-war four times since Wil started school. As a "retired" educator, I have my own ideals as to what makes the perfect teacher. They are pretty lofty. I can honestly say that there have been moments (more than a few) when I judgingly raised my right eyebrow when faced with circumstances that didn't quite fit my ideals. Well, we all survived (teacher included) and I learned a big lesson. My "angel" needs work. I love him. He is special, smart, loving and well....wonderful. BUT.... It has been hard at times. There have been days when he came home crying and demanding that I call his teacher and fix it. I worried that maybe the teacher didn't get him, was too hard on him, etc. I'm so glad that he has cleared the hurdles so far. I'm glad for the teachers that helped both of us. So, here we go again. Who will it be? Will they put up with me?
I was a good girl and I did not give-in to temptation. I haven't asked Mrs. Barker to divulge to me the classroom assignment. It's like a big deal at our house, the ceremony of opening the much anticipated letter. So, like all of you, I am waiting.
I did, however seek some information that I can't keep to myself. It is not top secret but I know inquiring minds want to know the process of creating the class list.
For Kindergarten, the teachers will all be getting to know the students on the first two days of school at Kinder Camp. By spending this time, they will do their best to evaluate students and their personalities. The goal will be to create well balanced classes.
If your child was in grades K-4 at Beachland last year, his or her teachers met as a team. After all, they taught your sweetie and they know how your child learns best. As a team, learning styles and personalities were considered as children were grouped into classes. The team of teachers did not, however choose what team/teachers were assigned to those classes. The Beachland Leadership team then assigns classes to teachers. Every effort is made to create balance and harmony for all children.
I also learned that letters will begin to be mailed as early as Aug. 7th and should be received no later than Aug 11th.
I hope this information gives you some comfort as you await the exciting news. If you have any comments or questions, feel free to leave a reply below.
See you soon!