Dear Parents and Friends,
Our second round of Student-Parent-Teacher conferences are mostly finished. It is quite an intensive process for students and teachers to prepare for these conferences and then a fair amount of time is allocated to the conferences with half days and no school days. We value these conferences for the ownership that the students have for their work and progress. The goals set are regularly revisited by student and teacher. While you would expect to see lots of “academic” goals, such as memorizing one’s multiplication tables or proofreading written work, we also see student generated “social” and “emotional” goals. These students might be working on listening to their friends more, or not crying when frustrated by a hard assignment. One day this week a student had a problem in the hallway. When I asked the student how this behavior related to one of his goals (“To not drift off into my own little world”), it allowed us to have a better conversation about when and where we need to be focused so that we don’t cause a problem for somebody else. We have seen, and research backs us up, that so often it is the improvement in social or emotional skills that allows for a student to fully realize his or her academic potential.