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School Leaders' Weekly

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Term 4 Week 2

Consistency is Key
In about a month, our P3 to P5 children will be sitting for their end-of-year examination while our P6 children will be sitting for PSLE next week. We would like to wish our P6 children the very best in this first milestone of their education. We are confident that they have been actively and consistently revising their work in preparation for the examination. Consistent revision is key in making sure that our children are well-prepared for any examination. Consistency is about two things: having a positive attitude and the drive to make things happen as well as having a structure around the tasks that need to be done. This means that it is important for parents and teachers to set routines in place in order to help our children develop positive habits from young as that will serve them well as they progress in their education journey. Stephen Guise, an international bestselling author, blogger, and entrepreneur once said, “Every great accomplishment rests on the foundation of what came before it.” Therefore when routines are put in place, our children are empowered to follow them through, thus taking the responsibility of their own learning by being consistent in their daily revisions. Our role as parents and teachers is to guide and direct them along this journey, encourage and motivate them to be consistent in their effort and to remember to acknowledge and affirm their effort.

Hearts and Minds of our Youth

We are also curious to know what is in the minds and hearts of our children as they journey through this final lap of the year. We talked about cherishing our childhood memories in the last weekly notification and I think it is timely that we also venture a little bit further and look closely at what actually lies in the hearts and minds of our young charges.
During the school online interaction time with our children, our VPs, Ms Tan and Ms Shyam, posed some questions to the lower and primary children respectively. While Ms Tan asked the lower primary children to share about the good things that they had done when no one was watching, Ms Shyam asked the upper primary children to share what they cared about.
The children wrote letters to both of them, sharing what was in their hearts and minds as a response to the questions posed. The responses were really interesting and candid and many poured out their honest thoughts and feelings. The responses from the younger ones ranged from helping with chores at home to being socially responsible while in school. Besides just stating what they had done when no one was looking, these children also shared how they felt when they were able to do something good for a family member or a friend. The older children talked a lot about their own insecurities and challenges--either at home or in school. They shared that they cared about examination results, whether they would find a job when they grew up and some even cared for the animals that were becoming extinct.
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Through these candid yet authentic sharing, we were able to gather how they viewed the world around them and what constituted the worlds they have formed within themselves. It was apparent how most of our children were cognizant of their own emotions, beliefs and strengths.
From the responses, it really drives home the fact that our children need to feel safe and supported regardless of the environment they are in. It is essential that the home and school provide them with structure and consistency that allow them to feel safe, cared for, and cared about. By engaging them in purposeful conversations, we are giving them the signal that we are there for them to listen to what they are saying, sense what they are feeling,
and notice what they are worried about. While our children share their worries, it is sometimes inevitable that
parent also worry for them. Maybe, if we spend less time worrying for them but actively listening to them so as to guide and encourage them, it takes away the worry from all. Echoing Stacia Tauscher, an Irish artist, “We worry about what a child will become tomorrow, yet we forget that he is someone today.”
Considering the pace at which we are going, it is crucial that we offer them a time and place where they can speak their thoughts, be listened to respectfully, to relax and to reflect. It helps when the adults in their lives are positive role models to guide them on their path. While we expect our children to behave appropriately, we ought to also ask if we, the adults, are people they look up to and want to be one day.

“When educating the minds of our youth, we must not forget to educate their hearts.” -- Dalai Lama

The words above encapsulate the major purpose of education and as a school, we are committed to educating the whole child. We hope to have more opportunities to connect at a more personal level with the children in supporting their social and emotional development. It is also part of our continuous effort to create the environment that is essential in developing the hearts and minds of our children.

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