On Father's Day, every year a deep well of gratitude rises in my heart. The gratitude surfaces when I recall who my father was and how he lived his life. As the tenth of eleven children, I had to do some crazy things to get his attention. Thank God, I didn't get into too much trouble but just enough that he had to sit me down and look me in the eye as we talked. Fortunately, every encounter wasn't about reviewing my mistakes but rather mostly about sharing little life lessons. I shared my father with ten siblings, so you can imagine intimate talks were in short supply. In the long run, I didn't notice a lack of time with my father because time with him was always well spent.
Each year on May 25th, the Catholic Church and Sacred Heart Schools around the world celebrate the life and legacy of St. Madeleine Sophie Barat. May 25th is observed as Sophie's official feast day by the Roman Catholic Church. As the founder of the Society of the Sacred Heart, she gave us a model of faith that is grounded in a loving, warm and tender God, as expressed in devotion to the Sacred Heart.
The question I get most from my 8th grade Algebra 1 students is, "Why do we need to learn this?" The answer I give them: "Algebra teaches you how to think and problem solve!" In algebra class, there is no doubt that the subject matter is rigorous and challenging, but algebra is about more than just learning how to solve a problem. Learning algebra helps to develop critical thinking skills, the ability to problem solve, think logically, and utilize deductive and inductive reasoning. These critical skills can be applied across all different subjects.
To showcase what goes on in their classrooms, 3rd and 4th grade math teachers, Jonna McGhee and Kelly Hughes, held a Q & A session with their students about what they have learned this school year and the math program at Regis.
Kindergarten is one of the most challenging yet rewarding grade levels. In my opinion, it's also the most fun, but I may be biased. This year is the culmination of students' foundational knowledge learned from home, in Pre-K 3 and in Pre-K 4. If you think of Pre-K 3 and Pre-K 4 as bricks, Kindergarten would be the mortar in building a strong mathematical foundation. Part of what builds this strong foundation is what practices you use and how you engage the students.
At Regis, we are continually working on creating an environment that best supports our diverse group of learners—focusing on student-centered learning and best practices that extend and enrich our current offerings. You can compare the construction of Regis' math program to the building of a new house—we start by creating a sound foundation, then add rooms that are interconnected and function well together. The math team has been busy blending curriculum that is rooted in mathematical language formation and the evolving study of patterns, quantity and real-world problem-solving. Centering on the unique cognitive development at each stage of learning, we aim to balance research based best practices to develop the competency and confidence in our young scholars.
About a month ago I was rummaging through my thoughts as it was becoming clear to me the holidays were over and we were moving into 2019. As is typical for most of us, the January swoon of dark days and sluggishness of moving beyond Christmas and New Years has the tendency to keep us locked in place feeling immovable. If you're a Midwestern or a Northerner by birth, you know what I mean—it's the annual pattern of thought linked to winter, reminding you spring will not arrive for a few more months.
As parents and teachers, we all strive for our boys to love to read and to be "lifelong readers." How does this happen? Kids can become lifelong readers for a variety of reasons. Sometimes he discovers a book that captures his imagination and opens up a whole new world to him. In some cases, it's a teacher who assigns a book that is the "hook" that sparks his love for reading. And perhaps, most importantly, parents influence their children's reading by modeling good reader behavior and sharing their love of literature with their children—by always having a book nearby that they are reading, making trips to the library or bookstore, taking a book along in the car or plane with them.
People often ask how we decide who should be a Regis Knight. Is admission based on IQ scores, family connections, student personality or teacher recommendations? The approach to admission to The Regis School is multi-tiered, meaning that we are looking at prospective students to try to best determine if the student is a fit academically and if he would be a good addition to the grade. In other words, would adding this boy benefit him as well as the rest of the students in that grade?
In today's culture there is a worry that our young males are afraid to leave home and do without the conveniences of the family's resources, but that is what has to happen as these young men develop in the stage between a young man and a man of character.
Years ago I was introduced to John O'Donohue by a friend who had just purchased a book of his prayers. As I read his biography I learned that he was a priest for many years and was a native of Ireland. His poetry and prayers immediately brought me back to the Irish landscape and the beauty of the rolling hills and the starkness of the rugged coast.
One of the most exciting initiatives we have taken on this year is the creation of our Scholars and Gentlemen advisory program. Upon entering the Regis middle school, students are placed into advisory groups, which are like little families, and assigned a faculty member as an advisor. This family-like unit stays together throughout their time in our middle school, only disbanding when graduation whisks students off to the next leg of their journey.
As we fall back into the routine of everyday life after Thanksgiving break, it seemed like an appropriate time to reflect on the act of reflecting. Nowadays, 'mindfulness' is a buzzword we associate with reflection. A google search of the word returns 140,000,000 results ranging from definitions and studies on mindfulness, to books and apps on mindfulness, to how to practice mindfulness. The sheer amount of information available on the subject leads one to question, "Is it that hard?" The simple answer is, "yes."
Have you ever seen Finding Forrester? The film stars Sean Connery, and it is about a young high school student learning to hone his extraordinary talent for writing after he meets a famous author. There is one scene in the film that teachers and parents alike can all relate to.
Teachers' relationships to boys succeed when boys feel not merely acknowledged but acknowledged as they very particularly are. Very particularly, every boy is situated along a trajectory of what he might ultimately be at his most fully realized.
The words we use in our daily life say so much about who we are and what we believe. This has never been more evident than when we turn on our televisions, or fire up our computers to watch the daily news.
I believe young men learn best through experience. You can tell them or show them, but when they get burned by the stove, they now have an intimate understanding of the issue at hand. This is what I call the 'Culture of Calluses.'
During my first five minutes in 3rd Grade last week, Grant F. asked me why I was spending the day with them. I explained to him what I was doing, and he replied, "That sounds exhausting!" He is absolutely right. After each shadow day, I AM utterly exhausted. This feeling of exhaustion led me to one of the major realizations that I had during these three visits—just how much our boys move all day long!
As we begin the school year the question on every teacher's mind will most likely be, "What teaching device will I employ to motivate my students?"
When teachers and administrators prepare for a new school year there is always a combination of excitement and anxiety. The excitement comes from knowing the success of the year is often determined by attitude...
Earlier this summer, I'm sure you remember the daring rescue of the Thai boys' soccer team from a flooded cave in northern Thailand.
Christmas seems to always come when we need it most. Yes, the date on the calendar for Christmas is always December 25th but what the feast teaches us never grows old.
Have you noticed Christmas decorations and commercials on TV started appearing before Halloween this year?
It is a daily ritual of mine to rise each morning perform some form of exercise, eat a short breakfast, and then search for a passage among the writing of Sacred Heart giants like St. Rose Philippine Duchesne, St. Madeleine Sophie Barat, and Mother Janet Erskine Stuart.
The great American poet and author, Herman Melville, wrote his most celebrated novel, Moby-Dick in 1851. The story has been on my mind this week as Texas prepared to be swallowed up by Hurricane Harvey.
For the first time in many years the First Day of School will have a different vibe in my house.
When the interviewer asked him how he overcame the struggle he said, "although I struggled with failure, I also had confidence that I could do what I needed to do. I strung a few successes together and my slump turned into a hitting streak. Let me repeat what he said: "I strung a few successes together, and my slump turned into a hitting streak.
It's the day after the Super Bowl and the reality of football drifting off into the distance of our thoughts is sinking in. As a sports fan since my youth I always have a tinge of sadness when seasons end and the players move out of the spotlight and off the sports pages.
The Society of the Sacred Heart, as it is often stated, was "founded in the turmoil of the post-Revolutionary France" by Saint Madeleine Sophie Barat.