It’s a First-Week Wrap (rap)…

Miller Rally was packed this morning with smiles, high energy, positive attitudes, touching stories, and much more.  Mrs. Bass completed introductions for all our staff members and then helped us celebrate the end of our first week of school.  We even had some super HEROES rapping and flying around with super hero teachersspecial learning powers in our midst!

The Panther Football Readers stopped by for their weekly visit to share special books and words of wisdom with our youngest learners as they gear up for their big season with the first game tonight.  Go Panthers!  :-)

Our PTO moms treated staff members to breakfast by rolling through the hallways serving breakfast tacos and other scrumptious treats…such a sweet way to start our day and end this great first week of school!

Some FFA members even stopped by to remind everyone about the upcoming meeting next week.   flyer

Here’s hoping everyone gets some much-needed rest as we enJOY a three-day weekend…see you bright and shiny on Tuesday morning!  Be safe!  :-)

Stand in my shoes…

SIMSThe annual Book Tour is complete for this first week of school!  With the book Stand In My Shoes (by Bob Sornson) as my conversation starter, I visited each classroom reading, listening, and sharing with our learners on the subject of empathy.  As part of the Love and Logic series, this classic gem illustrates in simple terms the need for everyone to see the world through the eyes of others.  The ability to stand in another person’s shoes to understand what they are feeling is critical; this process should begin at an early age.  While we didn’t literally swap shoes (“that’s gross, Mrs. Van…”), we did talk about how it feels to figuratively walk in another person’s shoes and experiences.

Empathy is a life skill playing a significant role throughout our lives.  It serves as a basic foundation for nurturing positive, caring, loving, compassionate relationships with others while building a healthy overall well-being.  Empathy does not offer excuses for bad choices (because consequences with love, rather than anger are needed at that point).  Rather, by helping our young students learn empathy, we raise the odds they will have strong social relationships, truly care for others, and be able to set appropriate limits in their own lives without angry words or behaviors.

A favorite part of my work at LME is participating IMG_5512with our learners in classroom activities such as book tour.  This year, I am challenged to work on “selfies” during daily walk-about (and yes, I need work on these), but half the fun is in the process!

Thanks for sharing your most precious and valuable treasure with us everyday at LME; we are blessed as a learning community and look forward to the LoveServeCare journey of this school year!  :-)

First Day Fabulousness!

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First day…cheers with little tears…smiles and with a few trials…overall, an extraordinary first day success!  As we started unloading big yellows in the early morning sunrise, a young friend bounded down the steps onto the sidewalk and threw herself at me with a big laugh:  “I just LOVE all this first day fabulousness!”  :-)  “What do you think of my fabulous first day outfit and new haircut?”  Eager to the get the year going, she volunteered to assist at the door to greet friends, share smiles, and help our Kinder friends find their way.  Later at lunch, she hugged me again, “By the way, Mrs. Van…everyone looks so fabulous in their new Miller staff shirts; teachers should wear uniform school shirts everyday.”  :-)  (We actually have several who would agree too.)  She even ended the day loading the bus again while telling me about her favorite part–“fabulous math games!”  :-)  I think it’s safe to say her day was “fabulous.”

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Our PTO Board was on hand early to share yummy treats and eats with our new parents during the annual BooHoo/YaHoo Back-to-School Breakfast following the morning announcements.  Several LME volunteers, including our own school namesake, Mrs. LaRue Miller, were on hand to welcome and greet learners and their families, share a hug, listen to summer stories, or give a high-five.  The Chadwell Family provided a scrumptious lunch for our staff-on-the-go and then Mr. Van brought by icy treats to cool down the staff after the 104+ car line (we did finish by 3:20 today—truly a first-day record for LME!).  Yes, it was first day of overall fabulousness with fun to spare.  Welcome back to LME and to the 2014-2015 school year!  :-)

As the school bell rings…

LSCTeamIt’s time; summer break 2014 is just a memory as we ring in the new school year. Classrooms are set, materials are ready, and we are anxious to get started! Our LME carpenters of learning are loving, serving, and caring for our learners and their families in exciting ways this year; they are designing days of educational purpose in a big way! As Jimmy Page, author of One Word notes, “Teach them to count the days so each day counts with incredible purpose.”JPage

heartshammersWe are proud to love, serve, and care our learning community at LaRue Miller Elementary; join us on our journey this year!

Note: Lots of hugs and smiles filled our hallways and classrooms during our annual Meet The Team Event last Thursday evening; thanks for coming out and sharing your enthusiasm with us!

…and we’re back!

tools1What a blessing to spend the day with our #LoveServeCare Team at LME this year!  Our staff members arrived with lots of enthusiasm, smiles, and energy to get this school year started!  They came with innovative ideas and a quality crafting attitude as we channeled our inner-carpenter skills to create wooden team “toolboxes” for the year.  After doing their summer IMG_5361homework (reading Jon Gordon’s newest book, The Carpenter), we put our Love, Serve, and Care ideas into action.  Using hearts (and hammers), our LME Staff was not only handy but full of fun teamwork.

Be watching for those extra-special carpentry and craftsmanship touches throughout the coming year as we design dreams and build leaders everyday.  Welcome Back, LME!

Note:  We look forward to opening our school doors for our annual Meet The Teacher event this week on Thursday evening.   Our 3rd/4th/5th grade friends will join us from 5:30 to 6:15 and our HS/Kinder/1st/2nd grade friends can stop by from 6:15 to 7:00. 

Ponderings from the top…

LembertDomeMy view at 9,000 feet…worth the effort (and attitude) to achieve this breath-taking (literally) experience!  Making my way along the rustic trail each day, I encountered some profound ponderings; here’s what I gleaned from each pathway:

  1. Expand your horizons.
  2. Reach for new heights.
  3. ROCK on!
  4. Keep a sense of wonder.
  5. Rise above it all.GlacierPt
  6. Be an inspiration.
  7. Cherish wilderness.
  8. See beauty all around you.
  9. Patience, patience, patience.
  10. Be well-rounded.
  11. Be uplifting . . . and
  12. EnJOY life’s peaks and valleys!

SentinelDome2Here’s to Summer 2014, the adventures, the lessons, the stunning moments, and the memories…and here’s hoping you have your own ponderings from the top soon!  EnJOY the rest of your time away LME friends; the school bell rings shortly!  :-)

Vacation 2014

I’ve used the short time away to really vacation this summer…see some sites, share laughs, and enJOY the view…  By far the most memorable moments of the past couple of weeks have profoundly beenElCapitan ones not on the scheduled itinerary—those priceless snippets of time where attitude (and some hiking effort) merge to produce a breath-taking experience…  Here’s hoping your time away gives you this gift as well!  :-)