CYNMIL
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Things I Learned as an Elementary School Principal

Sunday, October 18, 2020

I love kids and wanted to make a difference. That is the reason I got into education. There have been tears, joking, affirming, loving, laughing and more through the years. I learned how important it was to take care of myself physically, emotionally, and spiritually and incorporated fitness into my lifestyle.

Another thing I learned early on was to never ask children why they did something if they were sent to my office. You know what? They don't know most of the time! The little ones can't really express their feelings, and it often took the older ones time to rationalize and process their thoughts after an impulsive action.

Here is a letter I saved over the years from a kindergarten student who was having a meltdown in class:

Dear Mrs Blar
I am sorey for kikking you.
From _________

It's ok that they don't know the why, but learn how to handle those big feelings and express themselves in a healthier way. I did get a "kick" out of the sweet apology letter!

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • KALIGIRL
    Perfect!
    92 days ago
  • KOFFEENUT
    LOL - I sure could have used this blog about 30 years ago....
    emoticon
    92 days ago
  • CYNMIL
    Thank you all for your kind and encouraging comments. OSONIYE, if a student came in upset, angry or was having a meltdown, I would let the student de-escalate for as long as it took. I never gave "the look," but acknowledged them, and said we could talk when they were ready. When ready, I would ask the student how they were and how were they feeling, and then guide them through their thinking. Eventually, we would get to the point the student realized how he or she could have handled things differently. The process gave the teacher a break, and allowed the student to maintain dignity. That's what worked for me. RUTHIEBEAR, you are so right! Sometimes there is an explanation and bless you for your care and work over the years. emoticon
    92 days ago
  • RUTHIEBEAR
    I love kids too and it is why I became a teacher. One day one of my second graders came into the classroom and kicked the garbage can across the room. then he turned over several chairs. Obviously he was upset. I sat him down quietly and just began to talk to him. He blurted out, "My uncle died. He always took me fishing. Now I won't see him anymore and no one will take me fishing". He had tears welling up in his eyes. I told him it was ok to cry. He then told me, "No it is not! My mother told me boys are not allowed to cry". I gently told him in this his mother was wrong. He cried the rest of the day on and off. But when it was time to go home he pleaded with me "You won't tell my mother I cried, please?" I assured him it was just between us. emoticon
    92 days ago
  • OSONIYE
    Thanks for sharing!
    Avoiding the question "Why?", what was the best question you found for helping kids to debrief and dig deep?
    92 days ago
  • IMPROVINGME
    Yes, that letter's a keeper! Too cute.
    93 days ago
  • ALEXSGIRL1
    what a beautiful blog we need more people like you in schools Hugs
    93 days ago
  • LINDA7677
    We need more people like you in our educational system.
    93 days ago
  • REGILIEH
    Awwww! Bless their hearts! They were blessed to have you!
    93 days ago
  • SUNSET09
    We were there once, a long time ago emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    93 days ago
  • SUSIEMT
    I like how you decided to handle the situations by not asking why. I remember in 3rd and 4th grades I got into trouble with my teachers! I got an F in conduct. I guess I was not the most well behaved child around!
    So, from these last two blogs I find you were adventurous and compassionate as a young woman! Woo Hoo you!
    emoticon
    93 days ago
  • CYNMIL
    1CRAZYDOG.....I totally agree! emoticon
    93 days ago
  • 1CRAZYDOG
    Awwww, what an important lesson! Sometimes we really just do not know why, even as adults, but we DO need to learn what is acceptable or not.

    Thanks for sharing this sweet apology note.

    HUGS
    93 days ago
  • CYNMIL
    Thank you, 2BDynamic! I'm loving retirement, but do miss this kids a lot! emoticon
    93 days ago
  • 2BDYNAMIC
    Oh my, this is Very touching. There is nothing quite like the innocence of little children and this says it well.
    Anytime you want to share more I am all ears. ... I am sure you were a blessing to the school and this students. Here's to a happy retirement! ....😊 ...💓 ...
    93 days ago
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