Friday, October 9, 2015

"Thanks, Monte!"

Every year, Melissa and I have the kids write a compliment about each of the kids on our team. After we collect all of the papers, we stash them for a month or so. We then type out a list of each child's qualities that were noted by one of their peers. One day, when the kids have clearly forgotten that they did these "complement sheets", we post each child's list in their locker while they are away at electives. When the kids return to their lockers at the end of the day, they find a list of their qualities staring them in their faces. Some kids try to hide their lists, unsure of exactly what this paper is supposed to be. Some laugh, some read quietly and some immediately share with friends. Each of our kiddos leaves with a smile on their face. Of course, we tell them that a big moose named Monte, who happens to be our mascot, put those sheets in their lockers. This is one of our favorite times of the year. Here are some photos that Melissa snapped.

This gesture is important for our long-range team-building goals. We strive to create a family atmosphere on our team where all of our kids are kind, polite, collaborative learners who are looking out for each other. We want them to value the unique qualities in each other and feel valued about their own qualities. Knowing that others recognize their good points goes a long way toward achieving that goal. These sheets accomplish some of that even though "Thanks, Monte!" is really just a small gesture.

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