We’ve got the POWER!

pom9Oh yes…we’ve got the POWER here at LME today and everyday!  It was a grand day for proving our POWERs of strength, endurance, teamwork, and pure JOY during “specials.”  pom7Each learner, classroom leader (including yours truly), and several community volunteers actively participated in ten stations of exercise to earn a point of completion at each station.  Students (and the rest of us) gathered sponsors for our intended success.  Now we collect the money (due by Oct. 3) pom5and celebrate our success (Oct. 2).  We also look forward to sharing our final results in the next few days…stay tuned!

Special thanks to our incredible pom2Specials Team, led by Coach Rogers (with Hans and Franz), our office team (especially Mrs. Worley, Mrs. Boughton, Nurse Sullivan, and Mrs. Thompson), our staff, our parents, and everyone who participated or led the cheers as we raised funds and successfully proved our POWER of Miller!

Lead with your strength! (Part Two)

As shared on yesterday’s post, leading with a strength is a simple, powerful truth for everyday living.  During a highly animated followup conversation with Mr. Van (St. Michael) last evening about the post, he shared this extraordinary moment in his young life demonstrating this very truth…

“It was August 20, 1966. In May of the year, I was struck by a car sustaining severe, life-threatening injuries.  Living within a full-length body cast for several months, my father sought to provide encouragement and motivation for powering through during the long recovery process.  As a member of the Dallas Salesmanship Club, he secured sideline game passes for the Dallas Cowboys vs. Green Bay Packers game at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas.  My oldest brother, Tom, wheeled me in my stretcher chair onto the field at the 40-yard-line (what an experience of a lifetime!).  Late in the third quarter, the Packers were driving down the field using their infamous Power Sweep on almost every play.  Green Bay PackersWhen they reached the 35-yard-line, we had a perfect view to watch the each play develop.  Bart Starr handed the football to Paul Hornung who followed a parade of blockers around the right end.  The Cowboys defended the play well, pushing the onrushing team of blockers and runners to the sidelines exactly where we were located.  Sensing an imminent collision, my brother Tom sacrificed his quarterback body (because he was the star quarterback on the high school team) to block the blow by diving in front of the onrushing Packers and Cowboys.  Thankfully, eighteen players ran around my location without injury or incident.  After the game, Bart Starr walked over and presented Tom with an autographed chin strap from his helmet, saying, “Bud, you had the best block of the entire game.” 

Now THAT is knowing your strength…mentally, physically, emotionally…and leading with it, even in the midst of possible defeat!  Thanks, Tom, for sharing the true spirit of brotherhood and demonstrating how to lead with your strength.  Thanks, Michael, for sharing this most personal of stories.  Here’s hoping the learners in our learning community today create Power Sweeps of their own in the coming years!  🙂

Note:  We are definitely leading with strength on Thursday as we challenge ourselves to the POWER of Miller Event!  Thanks to all involved in this campus-wide opportunity and for supporting our many programs at LME!  As Hanz and Franz ask everyday, “Do YOU have the POWER?”  🙂

Lead with your strength!

During morning walkabout today, a child stops me:

  • Child:  Mrs. Van, are walkin’bout now?
  • Me:  Yes!  Please tell me what’s going on in your work today.
  • Child:  Well…I’m leading with strength first!  🙂

What a powerful start to my day!  This simple interaction reminded me of an even more simple truth in learning and in life.  Here’s a little story to better illustrate my point (for all you sports fans):  Strength

Vince Lombardi once hosted a four-day football clinic for coaches and devoted two full days to just one play, the Power Sweep.  If you know football history, Coach Lombardi and the Green Bay Packers won five league championships, including the first two Super Bowl Games because of that one play (see, St. Michael, I DO listen to your football lessons!).  Everyone, including Green Bay’s competitors, knew the Power Sweep was coming, and yet, they still couldn’t stop it.  Coach and his team developed a strength that became an unstoppable force of positive momentum, and they led with this strength every time.

Ask yourself these questions:  What are your strengths?  What do you do best?  Where can you be the strongest?  Teachers must be masters of not only their own strengths but 22+ others as well.  Focusing energy and practice, mastering fundamentals, and developing individual strengths creates a classroom culture of personal excellence.  The more time we spend developing and leading with our strengths, the more each person becomes successful in them.  We tell learners all the time we don’t need an average campus or an average “you;” we need the best you…and when you lead with your strength, you share your best always.  May we never forget the power of one simple, clear truth:  lead with your strength!  🙂

Note:  Speaking of strength, Hanz and Franz are reminding us of the POWER of Miller this week on Thursday.  Lead with your strength as we work together and have great fun sweating for change! 

Sock Hops and the POWER of Miller Pink!

As the teacher asked the question, I knew this answer was coming:  “What is one important thing we have now we didn’t have 10 years ago?”  The child responded, “ME!”  🙂  “We also didn’t have a LaRue Miller Elementary School, but I’m certainly glad we do now!”  🙂  Where would we be without both?

SockHopIn the past few days, we’ve studied our past to open the doors of possibilities for our future; in other words, we’ve celebrated some extraordinary milestones.  Family events like our annual PTO Sock Hop brought out an enormous crowd on a gloomy Friday evening sockhop1where energy, dance moves, and the laughter were high.  The Photo Booth alone provided two solid hours of entertainment and the results are simply amazing!  Thanks to our many PTO moms and dads, our LME staff members, and our learning community for creating a festive evening of family fun!

HanzFranz1Hanz and Franz made their appearance on last week to remind us of the POWER of Miller this year.  With an updated carpenter wardrobe and tool belts stocked with tools, they arrived on scene to “pump us up!”  We look forward to the big event on Thursday, September 25th throughout the day; we hope you join us.

Today, we celebrated the return of our beloved pink1Mrs. Bly in fifth grade by “pinking out” our campus.  Students, parents, and staff members showed their support by “Standing UP to Cancer,” wearing pink, and cheering her return to class.!  As one wise young friend reminded me, “Because we never know what it’s really like to walk in someone’s shoes, we need to be kind anyway; it’s hard being a person…”  Yep, little one; from sock hops to the POWER of pink, we’re all in this together

Power Friday!

“LaRue Miller Elementary POWER rules the today!”  power1This is how we started a powerful Rally this morning as we presented four special checks to the four organizations chosen by our learning community during our Power of Miller Event this year.  Representatives from PAWS For Reflection, the American Cancer Society, the Parkland Burn Center Camp for Children, and Manna House joined us to receive each check and share some vital information about their work and service as our learners and classroom leaders carefully listened.  It was truly a profound moment for our students to witness firsthand the POWER of giving to others in need.  Thanks to our recipients for spending time with our students; thanks to our LME learning community for raising money to share with others!

misd1Likewise today, our LME staff members enJOYed a special treat sponsored by the Midlothian Education Foundation.  During the recent MISD Employee Drive, our campus staff members raised the most money and were treated to a delicious fiesta of Mexican food prepared by El Fenix.  Thanks, MEF, for honoring us with this opportunity and for the spectacular work you do on behalf our all MISD learners and classroom leaders!

EnJOY the weekend and may the POWER be with you!  🙂

Pirates and POWER and Socks…oh my!

Pirates took over the second grade today and IMG_0465raided the entire school using their GPS devices, clues, and cleverness to track down the stolen treasure.  While I have no idea how or even why the treasure mysteriously appeared in Captain Van’s quarters, it goes without saying there was some explaining to do…  🙂

IMG_3262Meanwhile, the POWER of Miller was heard and felt as the gym (filled to capacity with eager participants and inflatables) enJOYed a special POWER day of interactive events.  Thanks Coach Rogers and the specials team for coordinating and keeping us safe and happy during six rotation-station special sessions today!  WHEW!  Speaking of the POWER of Miller, you are probably wanting to know some results:

  • Total raised so far:  $14,100 (keep sending in $$$!)
  • Top four charity choices from your voting:  Parkland Burn Center Camp, American Cancer Society, Manna House, and PAWS for Reflection

As promised, we will give our 10% back to our community by dividing it into these top four family-selected organizations within the next two weeks!  As a side note, we made an executive decision to narrow down our cancer choice this time to a specific student in our local community, Ethan Hallmark, who is fighting cancer once again.  He is a strong role model and shining example of great strength and courage; he is also well-connected to our learning community and we want to help him during this important time.  Our portion to the ACS will now go to Ethan’s Bucket List charity (if you have a concern about us narrowing this choice to someone specific, please notify the front office to talk with me about it).

Finally, the socks started flying this afternoon as preparations were being made for the annual PTO Sock Hop and Classic Car Show tonight at LME.  We look forward to seeing everyone, enJOYing some great music and treats, and spending time with our families.

Between the pirates, the POWER, and the socks, this week is a wrap.  EnJOY a fabulous fall weekend!