Walks with Columbo

May can be a very stressful time for educators. Staff Evaluations, School Improvement Plans, State and District Testing are all happening at the same time as we are trying to fit in the remainder of the curriculum and other projects (Time Capsules, Renovations, etc). With all the things we need to squeeze in at the end of the school year, there is one thing that is essential to include….self care!

There are many ways we can practice self care. From eating right and exercising to simply remembering to breathe, we need to practice being good to ourselves. The old saying is true, “If we don’t take care of ourselves, we can’t take care of others.” Educators are so good at many things, but we are often lacking when it comes to giving ourselves what we need. Just like all of you, I have my fair share of stress and I have found a way to help alleviate some of my own stress…walks with Columbo.

For those of you old enough to remember, Columbo was the lovable, bumbling detective played by Peter Falk. It was also the perfect name for our lumbering and sometimes drooling Saint Bernard. When I get home from school, I often have schedules and lists of things undone swirling through my head. I learned long ago that those things need to be let go of in order to have a happy home life. One of the ways that I have been able to do that is by my nightly walks with Columbo. Going around the neighborhood with him is very therapeutic. It clears my head, lifts my spirits, and gets my body moving. I can name most of the dogs in the neighborhood that we see on our walks, but I’d be lucky to name three of my neighbors. Our nightly walks are a time for me to take off the principal hat and just be in the moment. I take my cues from Columbo who is jumping for excitement and sniffing each fence and tree as if we have never seen them before. He is just thrilled to be walking and spending time with me. He teaches me the art of finding joy and excitement in small moments.

A mentor once told me, “Don’t sweat the small stuff. And remember,  it’s all small stuff!” My walks with Columbo remind me of that and give me the energy and peace to start fresh each day. How do you deal with stress in your life? If you ask nicely and are willing to brave a walk with a 140 pound hound, then I’d be glad to offer you the joy of Walks with Columbo!

 

Columbo at 14 pounds and 140 pounds! 

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“The measure of success is happiness and peace of mind.” – Bobby Davro

“Life gives you plenty of time to do whatever you want to do IF you stay in the present moment.” – Deepak Chopra

“Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy.” – Leo Buscaglia

 

This video is guaranteed to make you smile! 

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  • Saturday, May 19: Staff Outing/Karaoke! 9:15 PM – ???
  • Sunday, May 20: St. Baldrick’s Head Shaving at The Claddaugh 4:00 PM

 

  • Monday, May 21: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 AM, iReady Window 3 Opens (Computer lab is still closed in mornings for last week of M-STEP, but chromebooks can be used for iReady)
  • Tuesday, May 22: Building walk through by Harry Lau (prepping for summer renovations) 8:00 AM
  • Thursday, May 24: Staff Meeting Time dedicated to finalizing class groupings, 3rd Grade to Lansing
  • Friday, May 25: Volunteer Breakfast in LMC 8:15 AM, Staff & Students dismissed at 12:10 PM (M-STEP window closes)

 

  • Monday, May 28: No School for Memorial Day
  • Tuesday, May 29: Fire Drill 3:15 PM
  • Wednesday, May 30: Kindergarten Round Up, Parent Meeting (Williams) 2:35 PM
  • Thursday, May 31: Staff Meeting 8:05 AM, Buchanan SHS Graduates Clap Out 11:15 AM
  • Friday, June 1: Garden Dedication/Time Capsule Ceremony 2:00-2:30 PM

 

  • Sunday, June 3: Family Tiger’s Game 1:00 PM
  • Monday, June 4: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 AM
  • Tuesday, June 5: Summer Library Program Presentation in gym K-2 1:30/ 3&4 2:00, Kona Ice Truck here for staff! 4:20-4:40 PM
  • Thursday, June 7: Building PD 7:50-8:50 AM, PTA Meeting 7:00 PM
  • Friday, June 8: Field Day! (iReady Window Closes)

 

  • Monday, June 11: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 AM, 4th Grade Celebration in the PM
  • Tuesday, June 12: Kindergarten Concert/Celebration 1:15-2:30 PM
  • Wednesday, June 13: First Grade Water Fun 1:15-2:30 PM
  • Thursday, June 14: All School Assembly 10:00-11:00 AM, Students dismissed at 12:10
  • Friday, June 15: 4th Grade Clap Out 11:30 AM, Students dismissed at 12:10
  • Monday, June 16: Optional Work Day for Teachers, End of Year Gathering in evening!

Finishing Strong!

Last week, along with millions of others, I watched the Kentucky Derby. Now, I’m not big into horse racing, but I do try to watch the Kentucky Derby every year. It’s fun to hear all the intriguing names of the horses and see the excitement and fanfare at Churchill Downs. This year the track was wet and muddy and it amazes me that they can still run so fast through rough conditions. When they come out of the starting gates it’s a blur of color as they all burst onto the track. Soon, a few make their way to the front as they turn the corner and head down the track. First one taking the lead and then another. It’s in the final stretch of the race that all the excitement happens. The fans are cheering, the announcers are shouting, and one horse finally breaks ahead of the pack, sometimes by a nose and sometimes by length or more, to become the winner. It’s the last burst of speed and endurance just at the right time that can make a champion!

Education can be very similar to the Kentucky Derby. There is a lot of fanfare in the beginning of the year as we kick off with open houses and back to school events. We get to know the names and personalities of all our students. Sometimes we have a clear track ahead of us and some years the track is muddy and slippery, but we race down it all the same. It’s easy to have that excitement at the beginning of the year, but as the year goes on it can be exhausting. The key is to save up enough energy and spirit for that final push at the end! Our students need that encouragement as the year comes to a close and so do our teachers. I think one of the reasons that Teacher Appreciation is in May is to help give teachers that final push and encouragement that says, “You can do this! Finish strong!“.

Our students will take their lead from us if we continue to be enthusiastic until that final bell. When the halls are empty and the students are gone, then we can enjoy some rest, knowing that our race was well run. Champions finish strong at the race track and also in the classroom. Keep up your excellent work and your enthusiasm and know that you are making a difference right up to that final bell!

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JUSTIFY wins the 2018 Kentucky Derby! 

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Starting strong is good. Finishing strong is epic.” – Robin Sharma

Where you start is not as important as where you finish. – Zig Ziglar

That’s one thing you learn in sports. You don’t give up; you fight to the finish. – Louis Zamperini

 It’s funny because it’s true! 

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  • Monday, May 14: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 AM
  • Tuesday, May 15: MET/IEP Benson 8:015 AM, All Administrator Meeting 3:00-4:30
  • Wednesday, May 16: School Improvement Team 8:15 in Conference Room
  • Thursday, May 17: Staff Meeting 8:05 (Led by Jen Cory), 4th Grade to Riley
  • Friday, May 18: Student Placement Meetings (Rotating Subs), F&P Data due in Illuminate
  • Saturday, May 19: Buchanan Staff Night Out at Karaoke!!9:00 PM – ??
  • Sunday, May 20: St. Baldrick’s Event at The Claddagh  (Jon getting head shaved)
  • Monday, May 21: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 AM (iReady Window 3 Opens)
  • Thursday, May 24: 3rd Grade to Lansing
  • Friday, May 25: Students & Staff dismissed at 12:10 PM (M-STEP Window Closes)
  • Monday, May 28: No School for Memorial Day
  • Wednesday, May 30: Kindergarten Round Up
  • Thursday, May 31: Buchanan SHS Seniors Clap Out 11:15 AM
  • Friday, June 1: Garden Dedication/Time Capsule Ceremony 2:00 PM
  • Sunday, June 3: Family Tiger’s Game
  • Thursday, June 7: Building PD 7:50-8:50 AM, Final PTA Meeting 7:00 PM
  • Friday, June 8: Field Day!
  • Monday, June 11: 4th Grade Celebration in the afternoon
  • Tuesday, June 12: Kindergarten Celebration/Outdoor Concert 1:30 PM
  • Thursday, June 14: All School Assembly 10:00-11:00 AM, Students dismissed at 12:10 PM
  • Friday, June 15: 4th Grade Clap Out 11:30 AM, Students dismissed at 12:10 PM

Looking Back at the Future

Several years ago, I was able to check off an item from my bucket list. I recorded a CD of songs that I wrote, played, and sang. While it sounds like a one man show, it wasn’t. It was possible because of my good friend who had a recording studio, played all the other instruments, and also did all the mixing. (It’s good to have talented friends:) The name of the CD was Looking Back at the Future and was very therapeutic to me as I was going through some challenging times in my life.  Music was my outlet and helped keep me grounded. Each song had a story and captured a moment in time. The process took about a year and like all worthwhile goals, was a lot of work!

For me, recording my own songs was something I needed to do turn a dream into reality. I’m reminded of this time in my life, because I have several friends who are currently turning their own dreams into reality. Allyson Apsey,  Sean Gaillard and Debbie McFalone each have books coming out soon and they have inspired me and reminded me of dreams I have accomplished and dreams I still want to achieve. One is to follow in their footsteps and someday write an educational book myself. My goal is not to say, “Look what I’ve done“, but rather to accomplish a goal and say, “See, you can do it too!“. That’s what I take away from my friends’ success in publishing,  “I’ve told my story, now go tell yours!“.

As educators, we not only have an obligation to help our students reach their goals, but to live by example and reach ours as well. What better lesson can we teach our students than by modeling the desire and effort to make our dreams come true. Luckily for me, my ultimate goal is to do exactly what I get to do every day. Work with teachers and make a positive difference in the lives of students! One of my mentors, Paul Liabenow  often uses the term, “Living the dream“. I’ve been fortunate to be able to do just that. What dreams do you have and are you working on making them a reality?

 

 

Click to Listen to Looking Back at the Future

 

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  • Monday, May 7: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 AM
  • Tuesday, May 8: Achievement Team (Gruenewald) 8:15 AM, Fire Drill 1:30 PM, Administrative Data Meeting at Central Office 3:00 PM
  • Wednesday, May 9: School Improvement Committee 8:15 AM (in conference room), Elementary Principals Meeting 1:00-4:30 PM
  • Thursday, May 10: Collaborative Learning Time 7:50-8:50 AM
  • Friday, May 11: Sandi Benson visiting Classrooms for Video Recordings, Jon to Lansing for MEMSPA Board Meeting, PTA Spring Fling 6:00-8:00 PM

 

  • Monday, May 14: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 AM
  • Tuesday, May 15: MET/IEP (Benson) 8:15 AM, All Administrators Meeting 3:00 PM
  • Thursday, May 17: Staff Meeting8:05 AM, 4th Grade to Riley Upper Elementary
  • Friday, May 18: Rotating Subs for K-3 Student Placement Meetings, F&P Data due in Illuminate
  • Sunday, May 20: Jon getting head shaved for the St. Baldrick’s fight against childhood cancer @ The Claddagh (Just so people aren’t surprised on Monday;)
  • Monday, May 21: iReady Window 3 Opens for K-4
  • Friday, May 25: Volunteer Breakfast 8:15, Staff & Students dismissed at 12:10 PM
  • Monday, May 28: No School for Memorial Day
  • Wednesday, May 30: Kindergarten Round Up
  • Thursday, May 31: Buchanan Seniors from SHS Clap Out 11:15 AM
  • Friday, June 1: Garden Dedication/Time Capsule Ceremony 2:00 PM

 

  • Sunday, June 3: Family Detroit Tigers Game 1:00 PM
  • Thursday, June 7: Final PTA Meeting 7:00 PM
  • Friday, June 8: Field Day
  • Monday, June 11: 4th Grade Celebration in the PM (Cirque Amongus)
  • Tuesday, June 12: Kindergarten Celebration/Concert 1:30 PM
  • Thursday, June 14: All School Assembly10:00-11:00 AM, Students dismissed at 12:10
  • Friday, June 15: 4th Grade Clap Out11:30 AM, Students dismissed at 12:10 PM

Two Salespeople

Once upon a time, there was a shoe company that was looking at expanding their market. In an effort to collect information on potential sites, the manager sent two salespeople to a distant country to explore. After a week, a message was sent from the first salesperson back to the manager. The message read, “It’s hopeless! There is no chance for expansion. The people here don’t even wear shoes!“. Shortly after that, the manager received a message from the second salesperson. The message read, “It’s wonderful! There is a huge opportunity for expansion. The people here don’t even wear shoes…yet!

This is an old story and it was shared with me by Debbie McFalone. The tale may not be new, but the message is as relevant today as when it was first told. It’s often not the situation we find ourselves in that determines our future, but rather how we choose to respond to our situation. The second salesperson demonstrated not only a positive attitude, but more importantly a Growth Mindset! I know if I were the manager, who I would be sending to future sites.

As educators, we face challenging situations each day. We also have a choice every day as to how we respond to those challenges. When I look at the world of education today it’s filled with budget shortfalls, near-sighted political agendas, unstable family structures, and increasing poverty rates across the nation. But it’s also filled with teachers that care, technology that can give the quietest students a voice, parent volunteers, and student and community partnerships to serve the underprivileged. It’s the best of times and the worst of times in education. I guess it’s all at how you look at it. I think you know how I choose to view things…and that’s what it all comes down to. A choice.  Do you see a hopeless situation or a wonderful opportunity?

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“If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.” – Milton Berle

“Everything negative – pressure, challenges – is all an opportunity for me to rise.” – Kobe Bryant

“The only place opportunity cannot be found is in a closed-minded person.” – Bo Bennett

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  • Monday, April 30: Student of the Month Assembly 9:05 AM, M-STEP Testing Begins, PTA Meeting 7:00 PM
  • Tuesday, May 1: MET/IEP K.P. (Kurtjian) 8:15 AM, IEP for DT (Pisko) 2:35 PM
  • Wednesday, May 2: Jon to District School Improvement 5:30-7:30 PM
  • Thursday, May 3: Staff Meeting 8:05 AM (Led by Jen Medellin), Jon to ABC Negotiations 1:30 PM
  • Monday, May 7: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 AM
  • Tuesday, May 8: Achievement Team A.M. (Gruenwald) 8:15 AM, Fire Drill 1:30 PM
  • Wednesday, May 9: Elementary Principals Meeting 1:00-4:30 PM, PTA Board Meeting 2:30 PM in Conference Room
  • Thursday, May 10: Collaborative Learning Time 7:50-8:50 AM
  • Friday, May 11: Jon to Lansing for MEMSPA Board of Directors, PTA Spring Fling 6:00-8:00 PM
  • Friday, May 18: Grade Level Planning Meetings (Rotating Subs), F&P Data due in Illuminate
  • Monday, May 21: iReady Window 3 Opens 
  • Friday, May 25: Staff & Students dismissed at 12:10 PM
  • Monday, May 28: No School for Memorial Day
  • Thursday, May 31: SHS Seniors Graduation Clap Out 11:20 AM
  • Friday, June 1: Garden Dedication / Time Capsule Ceremony 2:00 PM
  • Sunday, June 3: Family Tiger’s Game 1:00 PM
  • Thursday, June 7: Building Based PD 7:50-8:50 AM
  • Friday, June 8: Field Day
  • Monday, June 11: Fourth Grade Celebration in PM
  • Tuesday, June 12: Kindergarten Celebration/Concert 1:30 PM
  • Thursday, June 14: All-School Assembly 10:00-11:00 AM
  • Friday, June 15: 4th Grade Clap Out 11:30 AM

#1000

Something special happened this week in the world of comics. Action Comics became the longest running comic and the first series to ever reach the coveted issue #1000. In 1938, Action Comics introduced the world to a new hero called Superman and the comic series has run continuously for the past 80 years. When Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster created the iconic character, the country was still in the grip of the great depression and the world was on the brink of the second world war. He became a symbol of hope that captured the imagination of the public for generations.

One of the reasons that Superman has been able to endure for 80 years is the fact that he has adapted to stay relevant with each new generation. The character may have been born in the comics, but he soon became a staple on radio broadcasts, where he came into the home of millions of Americans. When families starting watching television, George Reeves, flew into homes each week on the small screen as the Man of Steel. Later, the hero made his debut on the big screen with Christopher Reeve. He continues to be portrayed in every medium of entertainment imaginable. Through it all, Superman has become one of the most recognizable characters in the world.

In addition to staying relevant with media and entertainment venues, the character has stayed relevant with society. He started out as social reformer who toppled slum lords and greedy corporations. As the nation reached into space, Superman’s cast of foes became more cosmic in nature. In the current times of political, social, and economic unrest, Superman continues to be just as relevant as ever by representing core values and a symbol of hope.

Now what does any of this have to do with education? Like the character of Superman, educators spend their energy helping others, fighting injustice, and empowering others to reach their dreams. We have also stayed relevant by adapting to the needs of our students and our society by continuously reinventing ourselves and our techniques. While we continually adapt, transform, and reinvent, we also hold firm to our core mission and truth that ALL students can learn and that we will do whatever it takes to reach ALL students. Superman has stood the test of time and continues to inspire young people (and young at heart). Educators have done the same in the real world and to borrow an old phrase, “Real heroes don’t wear capes”. Thanks for being a hero to your students every day!

 

1938                   2018

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“If I had to pick a superhero to be, I would pick Superman. He’s everything that I’m not.” – Stephen Hawking

“A lot of people ask me when I do a stunt, ‘Jackie, are you scared?’ Of course I’m scared. I’m not Superman.”– Jackie Chan

“My version of Superman is essentially of a guy who has spent his whole life alone.” – Henry Cavill

 

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  • Monday, April 23: Celebrate Monday Assembly with Special Guest 9:05 AM
  • Tuesday, April 24: MET/IEP for N.S. (Benson) 8:15 AM, REED for C.R. (Benson) 2:35 PM, YMAD Ceremony at FHS 6:00-8:00 PM
  • Wednesday, April 25: Principals Meeting for 5D at Central Office 8:00-10:00 AM, Administrative Professionals Day!!
  • Thursday, April 26: NO STAFF MEETING, Art Fair (K-4), Music Concert (1st&2nd), Science Fair Displays (Participating Students) 6:00-8:00 PM
  • Monday, April 30: Student of the Month Assembly 9:05 AM, M-STEP Window Opens for grades 3&4, PTA Meeting 7:00 PM

 

  • Thursday, May 3: Staff Meeting(led by Jen Medellin)
  • Friday, May 11: Jon in Lansing during day for MEMSPA Board of Directors, PTA Spring Fling 6:00-8:00 PM (I will be back for the event)
  • Friday, May 18: Rotating Subs for Grade Level Grouping Meetings, F&P Data due in Illuminate(K-4)
  • Monday, May 21: iReadyWindow 3 Opens
  • Wednesday, May 30: Kindergarten Round Up

 

  • Friday, June 1: Garden/Time Capsule Dedication (2:00 PM?)
  • Sunday, June 3: Family Detroit Tigers Game 1:00 PM Sign Up Genius
  • Friday, June 8: Field Day
  • Monday, June 11: 4th Grade Celebration 1:30-3:30 PM (Cirque Amongus)
  • Tuesday, June 12: Kindergarten Celebration/Music Concert 1:30 PM
  • Thursday, June 14: All School Assembly 10:00-11:00 AM
  • Friday, June 15: 4th Grade Clap Out 11:30 AM

Renew, Recharge, Rejuvenate

Every educator knows that creating relationships with students, colleagues, and parents is time well spent during the first month of school. Those relationships become the foundation for everything we do at school and can set the tone for the entire year. But it is vital that we continue to maintain and tend to those relationships throughout the year. Spring can be a stressful time for teachers as it is filled with assessments, evaluations, and trying to fit everything in before the end of the year. One way to help alleviate that stress is to focus on the three R’s of the relationships we have developed.

The first R is for Renew: After spring break, many of our students fall out of their routines as school. Help renew your relationships by reminding them of the expectations and that we care enough about them to hold them accountable. Renewing a relationship can be as simple as “catching up” with students to find out what is happening in their lives. A renewed relationship is a more productive one.

The second R is for Recharge: Relationships require energy. Help recharge your relationships by doing something fun! Perhaps you need to connect with your colleagues for a night out and talk about things other than school. This job is too hard to do on your own. We need support and recharging relationships with colleagues may be just the thing to get you through the tough times.

The third R is for Rejuvenate: This is the time of the year when parents may become lax on reading updates or checking on student homework. Help rejuvenate parent involvement by inviting them into the classroom, asking them to participate with a project, or simply jazz up your communication with some pictures or videos of students. Active parents are great partners to have on your team!

We all do a great job of working on relationships in the fall. Make sure you tend to those relationships in the spring as well by renewing, recharging, and rejuvenating them. If your are successful, those relationships with students, colleagues and parents will have the same positive impact on you!

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“Treasure your relationships, not your possessions.” – Anthony J. D’Angelo

“Assumptions are the termites of relationships.” – Henry Winkler

“A healthy relationship is built on unwavering trust.” – Beau Mirchoff

Books worth Reading

 

Proud of my friend Allyson Apsey for publishing her first book!! 

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  • Monday, April 16: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 AM, PTA Board Meeting 2:30 PM
  • Tuesday, April 17: Achievement Team for A.C. (Adams) 8:15 AM, Achievement Team for C.P. (Medellin) 10:00 AM, Parent Meeting for N.A. (Williams) 2:35 PM
  • Wednesday, April 18: Elementary Principals Meeting 1:00-4:30 PM
  • Thursday, April 19: Collaborative Learning Time 7:50-8:50 AM
  • Friday, April 20: Spring Picture Day
  • Saturday, April 21: PTA Garden Beautification Day (Sign Up Genius)

BIG DATES

  • Wednesday, April 25: Administrative Professionals Day!!
  • Thursday, April 26: Art Fair (K-4), Music Concert (1st&2nd), Science Fair Displays (for participating Students) 6:00-8:00 PM
  • Monday, April 30: M-STEP Window Opens, PTA Meeting 7:00 PM

 

  • Friday, May 11: PTA Spring Fling 6:00-8:00 PM
  • Friday, May 18: F&P Data due in Illuminate (K-4)
  • Monday, May 21: iReady Window 3 Opens
  • Wednesday, May 30: Kindergarten Round Up

 

  • Friday, June 1: Garden / Time Capsule Dedication 2:00 PM (tentative time)
  • Sunday, June 3: Family Detroit Tigers Game at 1:00 PM (Sign Up Genius)
  • Friday, June 8: Field Day
  • Tuesday, June 12: Kindergarten Celebration / Music Concert 1:30 PM
  • Wednesday, June 13: 4th Grade Party
  • Thursday, June 14: All-School Assembly 10:00-11:00 AM
  • Friday, June 15: 4th Grade Clap Out 11:30 AM

 

Be The Change

Growing up, one of my heroes was Gandhi. I remember watching the movie of his life in my 9th grade history class and being inspired by his “March to the Sea” where he and his followers marched to protest the British colonial rule of India and their monopoly on salt. It was reminiscent of the Boston Tea Party 150 years earlier. I continued to realize that the people and movements that I admired from history had one thing in common…they acted! Many times this action took the form of marching. From Gandhi’s march to liberate India, to the marches for women’s suffrage, to Dr. King’s march for civil rights, to the current day Women’s March and the student led March for our Lives, the power of people coming together peacefully and uniting for a cause has great power.

Last month, my oldest daughter came to me to let me know what she wanted for her sixteenth birthday. My first thought was that she was all set as she was getting my old car for her birthday, but I thought I would hear her out. What she said surprised me. She said that she wanted to go to Washington D.C. to join the other students for the March for our Lives event, which happened to fall on her birthday. She didn’t want to be a passive supporter, she wanted to take action! I was filled with pride of my daughter and her willingness to act on her beliefs. I told her I would be happy to take her to Washington D.C. for her birthday and march with her. By the time we got tickets for our bus ride to D.C., my youngest daughter had expressed her desire to march as well. My wife, who participated in the Women’s March a year before, also wanted to participate. Soon, our whole family was packed up and ready to march together!

We got on a crowded bus at 11:00 PM and rode through the night. We arrived at Union Station at 10:00 AM on Saturday, March 24. After a hasty breakfast, we joined the other 850,000 people who came to march. The rally was crowded, but friendly. The speakers included students from Parkland, Florida and from across the nation. There was even a surprise appearance from Yolanda Renee King, granddaughter of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. We met people from all over the country, from every age and every background, united to take action for positive change. My daughter probably had more birthday wishes than she had ever received in her life. After the rally, we marched to the Capitol Building and then ate a quick dinner before getting on the bus for an overnight ride back to Michigan.  Sunday was spent napping and having birthday cake and getting ready for work on Monday. The experience was like a whirlwind and I am still processing it.

As I reflect on the experience, there are some things that stand out to me. First, there is real power when people come together for a united cause. Marching isn’t just symbolic, it’s real action that people take to show solidarity and often is a catalyst for political and societal change. The next thing that stood out to me was that standing up for what you believe in comes with a price. For every glorious march in the history books, there were people who ridiculed, opposed, and even tried to stop the momentum for change. Taking a stand for your beliefs can make you a target for anger and backlash, especially in the age of social media where it is far too easy to strike out in anger and scroll past people who may have opposing views, rather than listening to understand. Finally, I realized how proud I am of my daughters for having the courage of their convictions and taking action for what they believe in. My goal of this post is not to promote a political agenda or sway the reader to my point of view. It’s to show the power we all have when we take action on our beliefs and come together in a positive way.

As a parent and educator, I know the challenges of raising and teaching a strong-willed child. Their stubborn independence and even defiance can be frustrating. However, it’s these strong-willed children that will make this world a better place by following the advice of my hero Gandhi, as they take action and “be the change” they want to see in the world!

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“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” – Mahatma Gandhi

“Organize, agitate, educate, must be our war cry.”– Susan B. Anthony

“The time is always right to do what is right.”– Martin Luther King, Jr.

Gandhi’s March to the Sea (4 minutes) 

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  • Monday, April 9: Celebrate Monday Assembly (Reflection) 9:05 AM
  • Tuesday, April 10: Achievement Team for G.W. (Hurula) 8:15 AM, Achievement Team meeting with Laura Flis for N.S. 9:30 AM
  • Thursday, April 12: Staff Meeting8:05 AM
  • Monday, April 16: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 AM
  • Tuesday, April 17: Achievement Team for A.C. (Adams) 8:15 AM, Achievement Team for C.P. (Medellin) 10:00 AM, Parent Meeting for N.A. (Williams) 2:35 PM
  • Thursday, April 19: Collaborative Learning Time7:50-8:50 AM
  • Friday, April 20: Spring Pictures for Lifetouch
  • Saturday, April 21: PTA Garden Beautification 9:00-2:00
  • Monday, April 23: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 AM
  • Tuesday, April 24: MET/IEP for N.S. (Benson) 8:15 AM, REED for C.R. (Benson) 3:25 PM, Youth Making a Difference Ceremony at Franklin HS 6:00 PM
  • Wednesday, April 25: Administrative Professionals’ Day!! 
  • Thursday, April 26: Art Fair (K-4), Music Concert (Grades 1&2), Science Fair(for participating students) 6:00-8:00 PM
  • Monday, April 30: Student of the Month Assembly9:05 AM, PTA Meeting 7:00 PM,  M-Step Testing Window Opens