Day 83 (of 184) Monday the 13th
I always liked how the cartoon character Garfield wasn’t worried about Friday the 13th, but was instead fearful of the dreaded Monday the 13th.
Mine started with a stop at Starbucks where I ‘earned’ a receipt/survey that grants me a free coffee in the next fortnight. It suddenly felt that this monday the 13th was going to lead to some positives.
Then I connected with an inspiring principal from a southern district about some work on portfolios (of which are school is shifting to and taking report cards ‘off the plate’) – we were at first hoping to connect on Friday – but I teach that day. Thursday? He teaches that day. Finally we realized that we could just connect via Google Hangout and talk & conspire about some similar work: specifically on eportoflios, but also on anxiety/self-regulation and the hopeful upcoming dominance of the Seahawks!
Then I had to make my usual re-connections around the school. Always fun to talk with students about what they do over the weekend and to check in with a few specific students to set them up for the day. Also connecting with some volunteers from the community who are coming into the school to make ‘fresh lunches’ for some of our students who don’t always have enough to eat (not a big problem yet, but a noticeable concern) – these ladies have self-fund raised the means to provide 40 lunches for the week and they were thrilled that there were no leftovers last week (though in a sense they want there to be leftovers….;-)
And this is when I stopped to reflect on the strength of a school can be seen via its role as a learning community – and specifically as part of a bigger learning community… such as:
When I had to chat with another principal in my district about a student who suddenly had to change addresses and needed to land in his school – it continues to be reassuring that the trust and honesty we are able to have with each other keeps one thing central: what is in the best interest of the learner.
When I suddenly saw an interesting tweet, I was able to pick up the phone and have a quick chat with another administrator across the province.
Suddenly, my ‘little school in the shuswap’ doesn’t feel so isolated and small. I like to talk about our Learning Community involving the entire township, but I still need to remember how much of a part of a ‘bigger spiderweb’ we are – what happens on our strand sends vibrations around the web and vice versa (current big vibrations are around lettergrades/reportcards/eportfolios).
Which is why at the end of the day, my takeaway from Monday the 13th is the power of: (no surprise) Relationships.
After all, my evening continued with:
watching my daughters G8 Basketball game (and seeing the connection the coach had with her players and thanking her for that)
twitter discussions around technology (surprisingly this always brings up collaboration and relationships in class)
twitter discussions around engagement (which again, you need relationships to build upon).
So now I’m thinking that maybe that Garfield cartoon about “Monday the 13th” was more about how Mondays can be tough – but they are great opportunities to build relationships (even further) and make the ‘start to the week’ the best part of the week!