Tuesday, November 3, 2015

October/November: Fourth Grade Leadership

This October/November I want to highlight some of the special leadership opportunities for our Fourth Graders. Fourth grade is the oldest grade in the Lower School. No matter the age, whenever you are the oldest in a division, or department more is expected of you and those younger look up to you. But, sometimes these new expectations can be confused with power and over confidence. It has been noted in magazine articles and television programs that many students get caught up in their own lives. They become over focused on their friends, sports, and academics. Here at Breck we also want students to focus on those around them. We want to teach how to lead, when to lead, and the responsibilities that come with leadership. There is a humility that goes alongside that of a true leader, because the focus is no longer solely about you…more importantly it’s how you can support the common good.

We do have leadership opportunities and guidance for even our youngest students, but fourth grade is the place that students can excel in the area of leadership. Here is where we begin to not only develop confidence and a can do attitude within our students, but an awareness of others and the impact we can make on others. Fourth grade is where we add opportunities: to lead the student counsel, join a committee, form a club… and, do it with humility, focus, and calm.

To me it is important every now and then to re-read the Breck Mission statement and values. This is an important, timeless document, which tells us who we are as a school and who we want our students to become. Under the third bullet you can read that one of our missions is to: Instill in each student a deep sense of social responsibility. And, the value that seems to best connect with this statement is the final bullet under the values from which our school operates:  That each student should accept responsibility for the common good and develop a desire to contribute to those in need.

Our Fourth Grade Service Committee was selected a few weeks ago.  Congratulations to: Piper, Noah, Aziah, William, Belae, Corinne, Gus, Katie, and Tommy! We know by your actions that you will serve us well this year in the Lower School!

A Note About Service Learning:
*Service is a call to action. Service learning is a time to reflect about one’s immediate community and the world around you. It is a time to see the need, a call to action, to work together, and to reflect on the process with grace and humility. At Breck we want to be ready to serve and with that we want to learn empathy. We also want to be thoughtful in the process. There is a time to act and a time to think. There is also a time to reflect and a time to pray for guidance. There are always opportunities for all of us to serve at some time. Be open to your calling each day.

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