- Rachel Joy Scott
Will you Join me and my school and commit to reading a picture book every Thursday (or the first Thursday of the month if you can't commit to weekly) with "Taking Care of Others" or "Taking Care of Ourselves" themes? Why Thursday? In the beginning it started as Thursday for scheduling purposes. After some time, however, my principal commented on how strategic that choice turned out to be because Fridays are often a rough day for some students and this helped bring the message to the forefront on Thursdays.
Someone once tweeted a quote from Pernille Ripp (@pernilleripp) from her #GRA15 session at #ILA15. "You don't have to know what you are doing. You just have to have courage." I don't know the exact context from which Pernille spoke, but I imagine the courage she had to launch an idea like the Global Read Aloud not knowing how others would perceive it. She has inspired me and I truly hope this #TakingCareThurs initiative is perceived well and spreads for the kids sake. Dan Kerr, Intermediate School Principal from Ecuador, writes in this Connected Principal article that "big, meaningful change can begin with the very simplest of things...little changes that together over time will make the biggest difference in a school environment." Let's all join together and begin by making this little change that over time can transform our schools into cultures of kindness! I hope you join me for this very important endeavor!
How does it work? Read aloud a picture book every Thursday or the first Thursday of the month with important traits like empathy, compassion, friendship, persistence, grit, and more! Have a conversation with your students/kids about these very important traits. Most of the books featured will be about taking care of others, but we also have to spend time taking care of ourselves! If you need a list of books to get started, click on the "book collection" link and/or Pinterest board link on the right hand side of this page or follow this blog as I feature a book a week. You can check out the books from the local library, ask your PTO to make a donation to start your collection, or submit a proposal on @DonorsChoose for some book titles for your school. Join me weekly as I blog about our book of the week. Make sure to tweet your weekly choice using the hashtag #TakingCareThurs so we can share books, learn from each other, and spread the message.
We are going into the fourth year of this initiative at our school and I can tell you first hand...kindness is contagious! Let's get started spreading this very important Taking Care message!