edu180atl: nicole martin 9.13.11
I have learned a better definition of appreciation.
Today I participated in our Parent University program, reading Richard Weissbourd’s The Parents We Mean to Be. Like the conscientious student I’ve always been, I highlighted the book from start to finish to prepare for the meeting. However, while reading I focused on and connected with the book as a parent, not as an educator.
Only when going through and re-reading my notes this morning before today’s meeting did I come across this little gem: Weissbourd defines appreciation as “the ability to know and value other people, including those different from ourselves in background and perspective” (p. 38). Weissbourd believes that parents must model appreciation of others to instill this vital characteristic in our children. So as a tribute to his philosophy, I take this one step further, sharing my appreciation today of
… the kitchen staff’s freshly-brewed coffee,
… my coworkers’ endless intellectual challenges, support, and humor,
… the Kindergartener who made me stop and view the fish tank, naming each fish,
… the leaders of my school who appreciate both meaningful learning and a good prank,
… second graders’ excitement about Tweeting , and
… a student sticking up for a peer on the playground during a kickball game.
As educators it is our responsibility to extend Weissbourd’s parent message to the walls of our classrooms and halls of our schools. I challenge each of you to model appreciation today and every day.
Nicole Martin (@nicolenmartin) is parent of 2 little girls & Director of 21st Century Teaching & Learning @ Mount Vernon Presbyterian School
Weissbourd, R. (2009). The Parents We Mean To Be. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.