One of the things I really appreciate is that my school is an International Baccalaureate Candidate School, and one of the things I appreciate most about the IB Primary Years Programme is the IB Attitudes. We want our students to be global citizens who exhibit respect, independence, confidence, tolerance, enthusiasm, curiosity, creativity, cooperation, empathy, commitment, integrity, and appreciation.
As a school, we're focusing on appreciation this November — I'm guessing because it goes along well with Thanksgiving. As I was trying to prepare an initial lesson on what appreciation is and how we go about exhibiting that attitude on a regular basis, I was struck by how little appreciation I really show.
I can honestly say that I am extremely appreciative of my students, my aides, my fellow co-workers, and the simple fact that I have a job, but I'm also extremely positive that I'm appreciative of all these things only on the inside. I'm pretty sure nobody, except those of you reading this right now, has any idea how appreciative I really am, which is really sad.
And what's more sad is the fact that one of the people I appreciate the most at my school is no longer there and I don't think I ever showed her how appreciative I really was. I'm talking about my school's (former) speech and language pathologist. She was truly an amazing service provider and one who cared not just about her students' speech and language, but the whole student. I had the extreme pleasure of working with her a significant amount because the students in my self-contained class have pretty severe speech and language impairments. She was in our room for an hour a day. My kids were essentially receiving 300 minutes of speech a week. That's incredible!
And what's more incredible is that we were able to come up with a plan to weave academics (reading, writing, and math) into her sessions and more speech throughout the rest of our day. It was truly transdisciplinary.
And now that she's no longer at the school, I sit and I wonder if she knows how much my students and I (still) appreciate her. They made her awesome little thank you cards before she left and I was seriously tearing up as they said thank you and goodbye, but I really don't think I was all that great of an appreciation model.
This is something I really need to change; otherwise, I'd be talkin' the talk, but totally not walkin' the walk, and that's just pathetic. So I'm going to show another IB Attitude — commitment — and commit right here on this blog to finding a way each week to show someone I work with how much I appreciate him/her.
Week 1: I will show the new speech and language pathologist how much I appreciate her by making her a welcome sign.
Anyone want to join my appreciation campaign?