Posts Tagged ‘Gratitude’

January is the month of New Year’s resolutions where we set goals that we want to achieve.  It is also the month where we focus on Habit 4 Think Win-Win: Everyone Can Win.  While the first three habits focused on the private: things we can do when dealing with ourselves, the next three habits focus on the public: things we can do when we are dealing with others. The big ideas in this habit make for a great New Year’s resolution as it is the habit of mutual benefit.  It is based on the paradigm that there is plenty out there for everyone and more to spare. You may want to make Think Win-Win into your own personal resolution for 2022.

One of the big ideas of Think Win-Win is to have an abundance mentality.  This means that you are secure in your own self worth and that you know that there will be enough for everyone. In order to develop this abundance mentality, you can do the following things:

  1. Stop comparing yourself to others.
  2. Celebrate your own unique strengths and contributions.
  3. Celebrate when other people have successes.
  4. Share compliments, praise, credit and rewards.

Creating an abundance mentality will also help to build your emotional bank account which is another big idea of this habit. The emotional bank account is a metaphor for the amount of trust in a relationship.  Deposits build and repair trust while withdrawals break trust. When you are kind to others, you are making deposits but when you are mean to others, you are making withdrawals. During the month of February, we will be having a week of leading with love where our students will be working on building emotional bank accounts. Working on being kind, keeping promises, complimenting, smiling and saying hello when passing someone in the halls, listening, apologizing when you make a mistake, and forgiving others.

A third big idea of Think Win-Win is to balance courage and consideration. Courage allows you to face difficulties while Consideration is a desire to avoid doing something that will make others sad. While you have the courage to stand up for what they want, you still have consideration for what others want. This balancing act can help you with solving conflicts.  When facing conflicts, you have to be able to stand up for yourself, but you also have to take others into consideration.  To support our students in developing these skills, we have taught them Kelso’s Choices.  Some of the wheel choices fall under Habit 1 Be Proactive while others fall under Think Win-Win: share and take turns, apologize, make a deal, talk it out. Through practicing these choices, our students are learning to have high levels of both courage and consideration.

As we move into the New Year consider which of these areas you may want to focus on:  creating an abundance mentality, building an emotional bank account or balancing courage and consideration.  Whichever one you choose to work, remember to be committed and accountable to your goal. On behalf of the staff and students, have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

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

St. Teresa of Calcutta

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nature red forest leaves

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

For me it is a toss up as to which season I prefer more –  spring or fall.  There is such beauty in the colors of the two seasons whether it be the new spring green or the fall shades of red, orange, yellow and brown. I live on the West-side and everyday that I drive to school I am struck by the beauty of the fall trees draping over 12th Avenue.  The variety of colors bring to mind our Faith Theme for this year, Sharing our Bounty. The faith focus is to serve God by serving others. In doing this we are sharing the bounty of gifts that God has given us whether it be our time, treasures and/or talents. Each month we are challenging the students to find ways to serve others. The challenge for October is to develop the talent of kindness through caring for others.  At the assembly we watched a video All About Kindness that gave a variety of examples:  lending a hand, helping someone carry books, sharing with others, picking up something that has fallen, smiling and thanking parents for dinner.  Hopefully you will receive many thanks throughout the month.

If you are looking at ways to become involved in the life of the school, all parents are welcome to come out to a School Council meeting on October 16th at 6:30 pm in the library. It is a great way to find out more about what is happening at the school and gives you a chance to give input into decisions that occur at the school.  Each month we will be highlighting an area of the school that parents may want to learn more about.  This month we will be talking about the school’s Continuous Improvement Plan and discussing the goals of the school.

While sharing our bounty, a heart filled with gratitude allows us to share our gifts with others. In looking ahead to the calendar for this month and reflecting on the previous month, there are many activities and things to be grateful for where time and talents are being shared.

  1. Catholic Central Faith in Action students who are putting in 40 hours of volunteering organizing the gym equipment and other jobs around the school.
  2. Science Sizzle Club put on by the University of Lethbridge.
  3. Volleyball teams for our grades 5 and 6 students coached by Miss Nadeau, Miss Ingham and Mr. Cahoon.
  4. Snack Shack for offering healthy treats which is organized by Mrs. Nemecek.
  5. Luigi’s for once again providing pasta lunch and parent volunteers who help serve it
  6. Pulse for providing a faith retreat.
  7. The variety of fieldtrips organized by our teachers: Corn Maze, Helen Schuler Centre and Galt Museum.
  8. 6N for organizing our FCC Drive Away Hunger project.
  9. Learning about and becoming more aware about dyspraxia.
  10. The creativity of our students (and parents) involved in Crazy Hat Day. I’m looking forward to seeing the creations for the Turkey Trot and Halloween Costumes.
  11. School Council members who organize and all families who help to support the fundraising efforts which enhance the activities offered at the school.
  12. The amazing attendance numbers from September: 67% of students are at 100% attendance and 17% are between 90 – 99%.
  13. Attending mass each month with the Assumption community.

Finally, thank you for sharing your treasures, your children, with us. I am enjoying getting to know them and am starting to recognize some of them by name.  I am also grateful for the welcome I have been given from the school community.  I look forward to continue getting to know each and every one of you.  Please stop by and say hello at any time.  I would like to wish you a blessed Thanksgiving and safe travels!

photo of pumpkins

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

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Thanksgiving Blessings

Last week I was going across the bridge on Whoop Up Drive and was struck by the beauty of the array of fall colors. It was a moment where I wish I had my camera out so I could capture the shades or orange, yellow and red leaves. The changing of the leaves is a signal for our thoughts to turn towards Thanksgiving.  The roots of the holiday are in being thankful for an abundant harvest, and I would like to focus on the abundance of gifts that blesses our school community.  We are blessed at FLVT that we have many things to be thankful for.

First and foremost, the community is made up of people.  Thank you to all the parents and students who make up our Van Tighem community.  We are blessed that you have chosen to become part of our community and that you share your gifts and talents with us. Our students truly feel a part of the school community which is evidenced by the number of Catholic Central grade twelve students who come back to do their Faith in Action hours with us – currently we have ten former students. I am also grateful that we have such a committed and dedicated staff who give of their time to ensure that our students have the opportunity to develop their talents. Whether it is putting many hours into preparing lessons; helping to supervise a tournament or dance; organizing field trips; running a student club in the morning, at lunch time or after school; volunteering at the book fair; creating opportunities for prayer or spending time on learning new and innovative practices, our staff is always willing to put in the time for our school community. The following list is a few of the activities going on during the month of October:

  • Fieldtrips to Helen Schuler, Save on Foods, Water Treatment Plant, cross country zones, curling rink, soup kitchen and the Gardens.
  • Junior high book club, scrapbooking club, and after school skating
  • Father Salvador visiting
  • Thanksgiving prayer service
  • Parent teacher interviews
  • Fire Prevention safety presentations
  • Awards Night for our junior high students
  • Junior high volleyball games and practices
  • Weekly teacher professional learning time
  • Teacher professional learning on Catholic Leadership in Alberta Schools, Faith Formation, Fountas and Pinnell Benchmark Assessment, Guided Math, Fountas and Pinnell Levelled Literacy Intervention,
  • Staff professional learning on Residential Schools

Parents are also encouraged to become involved in the life of the school.  All parents are welcome to come out to a Parent Council meeting where they are able to give parental input into decisions that occur at the school.  Each month we will be presenting about an area of the school that parents may want to learn more about.  This month we will be talking about the supports, programs and services that are offered at the school. This year we are thankful that we have Tracy Rocca as our full time Family School Liaison Counsellor.  She will be talking to parents on Tuesday October 24th at 7pm about the counselling services. In November, we will be learning about the programs that our student nursing cohort have been working on during their fall practicum at FLVT.  All parents are welcome to come out to any meeting and I would like to thank all our parents who work to keep our Parent Council running.

To ALL of you in our community THANK YOU for being a part of our FLVT family and I wish you a blessed Thanksgiving!

thanksgiving bless us o lord

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Lent: A Time of Gratitude

To be beacons of light during Lent we focus on the three pillars of Almsgiving, Fasting, and Prayer. Our Lenten project this year will focus on almsgiving for Cancer Research. Our Me to We Club will be holding a fundraising activity and all the proceeds will go towards our Lenten project. The second pillar, fasting is a topic we discuss in class and practice in our canteen on Fridays. Kayla does not sell items containing meat on Fridays and comes up with “meatless” Friday specials. Friday items range from egg or tuna salad to cheese pizza, and as always, smoothies are available.
We started our prayer journey by going to Mass at St. Martha’s Church on Ash Wednesday. We will gather weekly as a community to pray and reflect on our theme “A Horizon of Hope”. Please come join us in celebrating each week as the schedule is on the calendar. Every morning we pray together as a community. As a staff, we also pray every morning with reflections of Gratitude The Power of Being Thankful by Joyce Meyer. Being thankful for our lives and the ways that God has blessed us, gives us a new perspective and fills us with joy. Practicing gratitude can also improve health and reduce stress. Even a simple smile and hello to start the day can make a difference in someone’s life. There are five weeks left of Lent and here are five ways you can focus on gratitude:
  • As you are eating supper together, go around and express what you are grateful for that day. We did this as a family last year during Lent and it is a practice that we still continue to this day. It is a great family activity.
  • Give your colleagues or classmates genuine compliments. Better yet, compliment a stranger!
  • Wait a few extra seconds and hold the door for the person behind you.
  • Get in touch with an old friend or a relative and let them know how grateful you are to have them in your life.
  • Do something nice for the person behind you in line – buy a coffee, pay for the order, or strike up a conversation

Gratitud and gods blessings

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