By Reed Gabhart, Head of Goshen Campus

One of the nice things about working in a school are all the “little” moments that sometimes go unnoticed but remind us why we chose this profession. We all tend to focus so much on the “important” things that demand our time; solving problems, writing progress reports (coincidentally coming your way this Friday!), curriculum, meetings, answering email, etc. But there are little moments almost every day that stop you in your tracks and put a smile on your face. Such as: 

  • At Lower School Morning Meeting this week, when it was time for student announcements (“that have been approved by a teacher”), Emma Blakey raised her hand and said, “I got a new cat this weekend!” There is no doubt in my mind she sat through that whole meeting just waiting to share this profound piece of news in her life with all of her friends and community.
  • At that same meeting, Molly Hales, Sydney Shoemaker, and Eleanor Kayrouz announced a We Act Club coin drive to raise money for Florida’s Hurricane Michael victims. What touched me was the pride and enthusiasm they displayed in being the spokespersons for this effort (and I was glad I had 75 cents in my pocket to turn over to them!).
  • At Middle School Morning Meetings this week, Shelly Jones reminded the kids to “think neutral to positive thoughts” about their classmates and others, because anything other than positive thoughts just causes negativity and brings people down.
  • I taught them what a “human interest” story is (they didn’t really know this term). My example was a story in the news about a small high school in Maine that couldn’t support a whole cheerleading program. So one girl cheers by herself for the football team at every game. She faces the entire student and parent body and cheers on a small box at every home game. She is obviously drowned out by the noise going on (and is dwarfed by the opposing team’s cheer squads), but plugs away undaunted at every game. I told them I’d let them figure out the lesson behind this on their own. As I finished, I saw one 7th grade girl looking at me silently clapping her hands. That was my moment for the week.

And that is one of the things I love most about St. Francis over the years. The heart and caring embodied in this School runs deep and is passed on to our students. That thread continues regardless of the decade, leadership, or any other factor you can name, and is continually affirming. Here is another example from School Counselor Julie Marks:

On Tuesday, Carrie Christensen from the Peace Education Program came to school to lead our 6th graders in a morning of cooperative games. During games of this type, students play with one another rather than against each other as they share resources and decisions. The entire grade came together to learn several new games, as well as play some old favorites. While the students had a blast, they also learned valuable skills in communication, problem solving, and conflict resolution.

Be sure and go over your child’s progress report with him/her this weekend, and I hope to see you at Imagine! this Saturday night at the Omni!