Monday, March 17, 2014

Sometimes you just have to go with the Flo!

Principal ponderings...
I had a different blog entry written for today.  I was actually ahead of schedule, adding the finishing touches to my entry last night.  And then something happened and a little message popped up and asked me if I wanted to reload my page because my unsaved changes would be lost.  But I was not worried because on Blogger it automatically saves as I type.  So I hit the reload button with no fear.  And then...I found a blank page staring back at me.  AAAAHHHH, everything I had written was gone.  My husband heard my quiet "oh no" and first said, "I'm sure it's there somewhere."  After he and I both realized that it was definitely not there, he said, "Well, do you have to write this week?  Can't you skip a week?"  Of course I have to write this blog.  No, I cannot skip a week.  People are expecting to get my email on Monday.  There is important information that needs to be shared.  

I was tired and I was frustrated, so what did I do?  I shut my computer and went to bed.  

When I woke up this morning, I remembered that on Friday one of our awesome staff members had given me this gift:
Yes, it is a meditating giraffe.  In the card, this staff member wrote: "This will help you remember to go with the Flo!"  Fast forward to this morning and I am taking a few deep breaths as I retype my blog and remind myself to go with the flow.  I am one of those people who thrives on stress.  Give me a long to do list and a short amount of time and I am all over it!  Pretty sure that's how I ended up in the role of principal.  (Well the thriving on stress factor along with wanting to have an impact on children.)  But there are today...when I need to stop, take a deep breath, and just go with the flow.

I was also reminded of the importance of stepping away from the stress factor on Friday night.  I know many of you were either helping sell raffle tickets, in the audience or even on stage performing at the variety show.  And even more staff contributed to the baskets for the raffle.  Even though I probably attended the least amount of practices, I still got up on stage and danced for all the kiddos.  It was so fun to see their smiling faces looking up at us, to hear them singing along, to high five them as we ran off the stage.  For the evening, we were education rockstars!  And I heard that the event raised over $4,000 to go to scholarships that will help create more education rockstars!  

After a long week of more budget meetings, difficult parent meetings, students having to be removed from class, Friday night was needed.  I loved every minute of it, and wished we could do it all over.  But now, it's Monday morning, back to reality.  While we won't be doing any dancing, the good news is we still get to be education rockstars every day.
**I want to take a minute to thank you for supporting me and working with me.  I know Dr. Bent sent out an email last week to all of you about my position.  I am truly happy to share that I will be signing a 3 year contract.  I look forward to all the possibilities that the future holds for Florence Roche.  I am honored to be the principal of a place that is much more than a school, it's a community of learners, and my home away from home!  And I love coming to work each day with all of you.  Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Currently reading:
I finished The Mighty Miss Malone which was a great historical fiction book about a family's love for each other during The Depression.  I have another book by the same author that I am starting, Bud, Not Buddy.  This weekend, as I unpacked the last box, I discovered that I have a lot of cookbooks.  So I started reading through some of them.  I have one that not only has great recipes and photos, but the writing in it makes it a good book to read.  It's called Joy the Baker Cookbook: 100 Simple and Comforting Recipes.
The tag line on the front says: "A celebration of butter and sugar."  Well that hooked me in!  And she starts the book off by saying, "Let me be honest--sometimes my kitchen is a hot mess."  Yep, so is mine.  In another section, she writes: "Sometimes we need a hug; sometimes we need brownies.  Most times, we need both."  Amen!  You can tell from reading this cookbook that the baking author started off writing a blog and then turned her writing into a book.  (Hmm...I wonder if I can do that.)  When you have writing like this in it, I actually enjoy reading this cookbook almost as much as I enjoy making the recipes: "Biscuits don't care if you decide to sleep in on a Saturday instead of going to an early-morning yoga class.  They don't mind if you drank too much wine last night or if you have morning breath.  Biscuits won't love you less if you spill coffee on the morning paper and it doesn't faze them if you gobble down five of their biscuit friends at breakfast.  Biscuits are silent, perfect, nonjudgmental, buttery breakfast friends."
I also picked up a book that I had abandoned, hoping to get into this time: Breadcrumbs by Anne Ursu.

Events this week:
Monday - Happy St. Patrick's Day!
Tuesday - Long Comp Day for 4th grade, Grade 1 concert rehearsal from 12:00-1:15
Wednesday - 3rd grade ELA MCAS in the morning, 1st grade school concert @ 9:30, Staff meeting @3:30
Thursday - 3rd grade ELA MCAS in the morning, 2nd grade field trip to Peacock Players in the morning, 1st grade evening concert @ 7:00
Friday - Staff Breakfast beginning at 8:15 in the staff room (The Mahan family wanted to thank all of you for your support so they are providing a catered breakfast.)

Great things I noticed last week:

  • Did you know that our 4th graders read 483 books as part of the MCBA project, The Massachusetts Children's Book Award project?  That is amazing!  Flo Ro students voted on their favorite, Out of My Mind.  If you haven't read it yet, I recommend that you do.  I saw lots of students stopping to check out the bulletin board in the hallway that is dedicated to the MCBA books.  We have also been trying to get copies of all of the MCBA books into our school library.
  • 1st and 2nd grade teachers were solving math problems and explaining their thinking.  Don't forget pictures, equations and words!
Check it out:
This is an interesting list of 50 Crazy Ideas to Change Education.
And since it is the start of MCAS season...I love this letter that an elementary principal wrote to her students after the test results came in, reminding them that they are way more than a test score:

Some videos clips to make you smile this morning...Be more dog!
And here is a great rant about creating passwords!

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