Dear Cordova Bay Families,
While thinking about gratitude, perhaps the most important virtue to nurture in children, I came across an article in Harvard Medical School’s Healthbeat newsletter. The article was titled Giving thanks can make you happier. Of course, who would say no to being happier. So today, I have chosen to write a thank-you note, one of the suggestions from the article, to all of my Cordova Bay families.
“Acknowledging the good that is already in your life is the foundation for all abundance,” Eckhart Tolle. In times of crisis it is easy to see what we don’t have; however, throughout this school year, despite the challenges, our community of parents continually focused on shining a light on what we hold dear and have with us each and every day – strong, open relationships and deep care, concern and trust. Solid relationships are the foundation of strong communities. Evidence of our partnership was seen in your words of encouragement to my staff for their incredible agility and ability in moving from in school learning to remote and back again, in your presence and warm smiles at events such as our neighbourhood parade and in entrusting your children to us as we welcomed some of them back to the school for June. For those parents who chose to continue to engage in remote learning activities, thank you for trusting that the talented teachers and educational assistants at Cordova Bay could continue to meet your child(ren)’s needs in this creative format.
Parents and caregivers, we became co-teachers this year and you were there every step of the way as masterclass guides and coaches for your child(ren). So many of you communicated with me the incredible learning opportunities you shared with your child(ren,) over the last few months. In the Indigenous ways of knowing, we all experienced what is known as Celhcelh. Celhcelh means that “each person is responsible for their learning, finding and taking advantage of all opportunities to learn and maintaining openness to learning. Each person must take the initiative to become part of the learning community, by finding their place and fitting themselves into the community. This includes offering what knowledge and expertise you have to benefit the communal work being carried out” (Halbert & Kaser, 2013). This term, as per BC Provincial Performance Standards, you are all Extending in team work….A+++ Thank you for maintaining your openness to learning in support of your child(ren)’s ongoing growth!
Lastly, I am grateful to you for continuing to put your child(ren)’s social-emotional needs first. You supported robust learning by reducing stressors for your child(ren) and by ensuring adequate sleep, nutrition, and daily exercise. Not an easy task while juggling the demands of working from home, the complex emotional needs resulting from the uncertainties of COVID and your own unique feelings and concerns. Many of you reached out to our team for suggestions on managing children’s difficult emotions, big fears and active, wiggly, little bodies, while at the same time supporting them in completing their daily learning plans. Well done team!
I am deeply grateful to you all and look forward to 2020-2021 with optimism and a sense of pride that we did it – TOGETHER!
Mrs. Mary Lynn Heron