Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘#7Habits’

I did a google search on Mary to find out if she was called as a peacemaker. I found a Wikipedia page about the Titles of Mary that were more numerous that I realized. The titles differ from early titles to devotional titles to those associated with images or apparitions.  Yes, I did eventually find that in the Roman Catholic Church she has the title of Our Lady of Peace, Mother of Peace, Queen of Peace or Our Lady Queen of Peace. In this month of Mary, I wanted to talk to you about the Kelso’s Choice program we have introduced which believes that every child is capable of being a peacemaker.

Earlier in the year, we noticed that students were coming up to the adults on supervision to tell them about their problems and then the adult would solve the problem for the students.  Our school counsellor, Miss Ann Elise, suggested Kelso’s Choice conflict management skills program to us which has been effectively used at various schools for over 25 years. We wanted students to Be Proactive (Habit 1) and solve their own problems and conflict. The philosophy of the program fits well with the 7 Habits as it believes that each child is smart enough and strong enough to resolve conflict.

When students are faced with conflicts, the first step for them is to decide if it is a small or a big problem.  A big problem is one that they need adult help to solve and they can make students feel scared, worried or frightened. Examples of big problems are if someone is in danger, a student is hurt or some students are fighting. A small problem is one that students can solve on their own and they can make students feel annoyed, frustrated, embarrassed or have hurt feelings.  Small problems may be the following: not sharing a toy or equipment, pushing or cutting in line, saying you are not out when tagged or arguing about which game to play. In order to solve the problem, Kelso has a Choice Wheel where students can try out a couple of choices to solve their conflict.  If, after trying a couple of choices, the problem isn’t solved then the students can talk to an adult to help them solve it.

The choices on the wheel give both verbal and non verbal options and fit in with what we teach the students with the 7 Habits. The following are the choice the students can make to solve small problems.

Habit 1 Be Proactive: You’re in Charge

These choices remind students that they are free to choose their reactions and are responsible for themselves.  We are asking students to choose to react like water not soda.  If you shake up a water bottle then open it, nothing happens but if you do the same thing to soda, it will explode all over when the cap comes off.  These choices help students act proactively like water.

  1. Tell Them to Stop
  2. Walk Away
  3. Ignore It
  4. Go to Another Game
  5. Wait and Cool Off

Habit 4 Think Win-Win: Everyone Can Win

These choices explore the ideas of fairness and mutual benefit.  We are asking students to consider other people’s wins as well as their own. In using these choices, the students are trying to come up with solutions that benefit others as well as themselves.  They are practicing and learning how to Lead with Love.

  1. Make a Deal
  2. Apologize
  3. Talk It Out
  4. Share and Take Turns

Currently only the Grades 1 and 2 students received the Kelso’s Choice lessons and have practicing the skills.  Next year we are planning on teaching the skills to more grades in the school as we have seen success.  Now, when students come up to us with concerns, the first thing we do is ask them if this is a big problem or a small problem.  We help guide them through the process as needed instead of solving their problems.  The website has a parent page with some information so that you can use the same language at home.  You too can help them to learn to peacemakers at home.

Kelso’s Choice Wheel

Read Full Post »

Its hard to believe that it’s approaching the one-year mark since I came to St. Teresa of Calcutta School.  I have really enjoyed getting to know the staff and students and I am looking forward to the day when I can meet many of you in person.  I knew of the 7 Habits and had heard from my colleagues about the merits of them in schools, but I had never been in a Leader in Me School.  After my experience this past year, I now understand how effective the 7 Habits are not only in schools, but also in everyday use for everyone.

One of the priorities we have focused on this year is integration of the 7 Habits and our Catholic Faith.  During Advent and Lent we linked together the 7 Habits, the Catholic themes of those seasons, and our Faith Plan calls to action of Be Gracious and Be Grateful. We have also been looking at meshing together our faith with the 7 Habits.  We looked at how other Catholic schools did the same thing and liked the idea of finding Bible stories where the people demonstrated the different habits. God does work in mysterious ways because we received a copy of the book Do Something Beautiful for God: The Essential Teaching of Mother Teresa. The book provided us with statements made by St. Teresa for every day of the year and as we read through the book, we realized how much of her teachings we could relate to the meaning of the 7 Habits.  We then proceeded to read through and jot down different statements she made that we thought best represented each of the habits. The following is a draft of our ideas:

Habit 1:  Be Proactive – You’re in Charge

Bible Story: The Wedding at Cana

St. Teresa Teaching: Do not wait for leaders; do it alone, person to person.

Habit 2:  Begin with the End in Mind – Have a Plan

Bible Story: The Story of Noah’s Ark

St. Teresa Teaching: God doesn’t require us to succeed, He only requires that you try.

Habit 3:  Put First Things First – Work First, Then Play

Bible Story: The Story of Creation

St. Teresa Teaching: Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come.  We have only today. Let us begin.

Habit 4:  Think Win-Win – Everyone Can Win

Bible Story: The Story of the Good Samaritan

St. Teresa Teaching: Spread love everywhere you go. Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier.

Habit 5:  Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood – Listen Before You Talk

Bible Story: Finding Jesus in the Temple

St. Teresa Teaching: Before you speak, it is necessary for you to listen, for God speaks in the silence of the heart.

Habit 6:  Synergize – Together is Better

Bible Story: Jesus Calls the First Disciples

St. Teresa Teaching: I can do things you cannot and you can do things I cannot.  Together we can do great things.

Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw – Balance Feels Best

Bible Story: The Resurrection of Jesus

St. Teresa Teaching: Life is an adventure, live it.  Life is a game, play it.

Habit 8: Find Your Voice and Inspire Others to Find Theirs

Bible Story: Moses Speaks to the Israelites

St. Teresa Teaching: I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.

May the blessing of Christ be with you during the Lenten and Easter Season. We ask that He watch over our school community during the upcoming holidays that we may safely return with a new spirit and energy.

Read Full Post »

October Thoughts

It is a month into our new normal and as we are approaching Thanksgiving, I want to express my thanks to the entire school community for adapting to all the new procedures.  The staff has worked hard to come up with the general school procedures and to develop procedures for their own classes.  Our caretaking staff needs a huge pat on the back as they have worked tirelessly to create a cleaning and sanitizing schedule that ensures the classrooms are all sanitized during lunch recess.  There are days where they are running from one class to another and we should soon have an additional four-hour caretaker to help out during the day. With everyone Synergizing, together is truly better.

We are in our second year of our Faith Plan Making Our Mark – Journey of an Intentional Disciple and our theme for this coming year is Transformed by the Journey.  Our first call to action is to Be Gracious and when we are welcoming to others, we welcome Jesus into our midst and become Jesus for that person. It is fitting that with this theme that we are able to welcome students back to school.  In Matthew 18:20 Jesus said that where two or three are gathered together in my name, I am there among them.  We will continue to gather and welcome Jesus into our midst, but our gatherings will look a little different this year.  As we did with opening mass, we had a class of students present while the others joined in virtually.  We are hoping to be able to have our school community join us virtually for future celebrations.

Our second call to action is to Be Grateful and we are focusing on an attitude of gratitude where we acknowledge God’s presence and give thanks. As we are heading into Thanksgiving, we will be focusing on giving thanks and expressing gratitude.   One of the things I am grateful for is that I am at a Leader in Me school.   The students are learning the language and meaning of the 7 Habits and I am learning alongside them. The more I learn, the more I realize the depths of the meaning of each habit.  There are many layers to each habit and, each year, students peel more layers to develop a deeper understanding and to learn more skills.  Below is a summary of each of the habits so that you can use the same language at home with them.

Habit 1: Be Proactive (You’re in Charge)

Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind (Have a Plan)

Habit 3:  Put First Things First (Work First, then Play)

Habit 4:  Think Win-Win (Everyone Can Win)

Habit 5:  Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood (Listen Before You Talk)

Habit 6: Synergize (Together is Better)

Habit 7:  Sharpen the Saw (Balance feels Best)

St. Teresa of Calcutta spoke of gratitude and said that, “joy is prayer; joy is strength; joy is love.  God loves a cheerful giver.  The best way we can show our gratitude to God and the people is to accept everything with joy.” I pray that your October is filled with joy.

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: