This year has been a real growth year for me having a child in actual SCHOOL. I have been through highs and lows. I have watched my son struggle to adapt and I have struggled to adapt, as well. I have also witnessed the birth of an independent child who has come into his own and is thriving in his new environment. I can tell you right now it's because of the PEOPLE.
Yesterday when I dropped my son off at school, the staff member who opened the door and let him out said, "Good morning, Jake!" and I then heard the administrator on duty say, "Hi, Jake!" Not only did that leave me grinning from ear to ear as I drove off, I know it made my son feel like he was important...like he was part of the group...like he was meant to be there.
As an educator in this business for over 15 years, I have certainly heard speeches and seen presentations about the importance of calling students by name. However, this year - I have experienced that from a very different perspective - as a parent.
I challenge you to learn the names of the students on your campus and call those kids by name. I don't care if they're 5 or 15...every kid wants to be known...every kid want to be loved...every kid wants to be someone. Try to learn the name of 5 new kids each week and address them by name when you see them in the hall. I imagine that the small time investment on your part will be well worth the reward.