In Love with Excellence

The secret of joy in work is contained in one word – excellence.  To know how to do something well is to enjoy it. ~Pearl Buck

Week 24 in Review

When thinking about the exciting Court Warming week we enjoyed last week at Benton, I must tell you that I absolutely love our school, our students and our teachers.  I love that we are in love with getting better at what we do each day.  Please forgive me this cliché, but we never said it [our journey to excellence] would be easy, but we did say it would be worth it.  Thank you to everyone who made last week excellent and worth it.  STUCO, counselors, ACT Academy instructors, cheerleaders, nutrition, maintenance, staff (especially for your participation all week), and students – you were all amazing.

Despite the social events we enjoyed all week that make high school in America the experience it is, I was also humbled and pleased to visit classroom after classroom where the teaching and learning was exciting and new.  Every day I am delighted to see our students learning in ways that even in our cart/computer environment I did not see in such a saturated fashion.  Then on Friday, I was guided to a post written by Will Richardson that I think absolutely grounds us in the thinking we must have resonating through our instructional staff.  Will is a dear friend of the St. Joseph School District, and so by default, Benton family. If you do not follow him on Twitter (@willrich45), you should.  I am linking his blog here for everyone to connect with his learning on-line, and finally, I am pasting this post for you all to think about.  I hope more than anything, you fall in love with his excellence. Thanks Will for keeping us all focused on our journey to excellence.

Week 25 – A Look Ahead

Are you thinking snow?  You are in good company.  We are ready if the Monday snow dance does actually work this time. Just a reminder, this week we have department meetings on Tuesday and Wednesday to finalize the preparing for student registration for 2012-2013 and ensure everyone feels very comfortable with the process.  Our counselors will meet with you in small groups (department chairs should contact Karen if you do not know time/location to meet with the counselors) to answer any specific questions and help you with any concerns you may still have at this time.  They have worked hard to prepare us and our students – they are meeting with students by grade level to give them information that will continue to make the process as smooth as possible – and I know this will be one our most successful registrations ever.  Tuesday and Thursday we have our senior nights for boys and girls basketball, respectively. Tuesday we are celebrating with RED OUT dress up, and Thursday is Retro dress up.  Join the fun and let’s live it up with our students! It would be very touching if you could be there for our athletes.

Speaking of touching, this is “Have a Heart” Week.  Symbolically, the color of the week is red.  It’s our color, and our week to revel in the moment.  Take time this week to say something special to a student and faculty friend.  Be a listener.  Share smiles and kind comments.  This is our week.  One group of students you could especially “share the love with” is our wrestlers who will leave Wednesday to head to Columbia for State Wrestling.  We are super proud of how they have represented us all season, and it would be fitting to show them how much you care.

Finally, Friday is faculty lunch.  What a nice way to end this fun week of caring.  Make sure you participate and come socialize with each other.  And thank you all for making it worth it.

~Excellence is a journey, not a destination.~

Photos are CC from Flikr: “Hearts” by jcoterhals.  Screenshots from Will Richardson Blog “The Shift to Networks.” 

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