I enjoyed attending my first AASA Educational Conference today. I was able to attend 3 sessions, including Capturing Kids’ Hearts. The Capturing Kids’ Hearts session shared how staff, students, and administration utilize this program to help cultivate a culture where students feel that school is their “safe place to be”. Some key take away thoughts from this session, for me, were
- Building relationships between the members of the educational family needs to be intentional and with a plan on how it will look and sound for the district and buildings. If you plan it, you are planning to be successful. It won’t just happen by hoping it will.
- It is important to always ask “why” when we look at our programs and learning environment. As one presenter shared, “It’s not about “what we do ” but “why”.
- Academic skills are very important for students to be successful post graduation. However, along with those academic skills, it is important to assist students with the development of character. It is important to teach students those “soft skills”. This will assist students to develop academic skills and character traits that are key to helping them to higher levels of success.
- “Don’t underestimate what students are capable of doing. They can!” If educators can cultivate a culture that supports social and emotional growth, it supports students respecting teachers and teachers respecting students and everyone works harder for everyone. It’s a win-win for all.
The passion displayed by the students, staff, and administration for utilizing the program “Capturing Kids’ Hearts” in their school was moving. It was apparent that their culture was changing to support higher levels of success as they empowered kids to be leaders. If you didn’t have the chance to watch this presentation, it’s worth a watch down the road.