Too busy to say thanks

By Jim Shevchuk

“Piglet noticed that even though he had a Very Small Heart, it could hold a rather large amount of Gratitude.”
― A.A. Milne  Winnie the Pooh

It seems like I have forgotten what my mother taught me.  Be polite, help other because some day you may need that same kindness and above all thank everyone and really mean it!  On a recent trip down south I was moved by the genuine appreciate of servers that noticed Canadians expressing their sincere thanks for a job well done. At first it appeared like a foreign concept but then their faces seemed to light up.  For a few brief moments I felt a connection with these people “just doing their jobs”. But they did them well and it reminded me that sometimes we need to extend that simply courtesy to our friends, families and colleagues.  I honestly believe we get so busy that we don’t say what we are feeling and thinking.  This year there have been a plethora of initiatives that teachers and staff have been asked to put in place, many by division officials.   This can be overwhelming.  When I see someone it dawns on me that I really should have thanked them for their excellent deeds, aiding a student or their generous creativity and I am embarrassed that I did not do so.  We don’t need a Dale Carnegie lesson on gratitude; I am merely reminded about the power of a few moments of honest discussion. Valuing people and taking the time to thank them is one of my life goals.  I am still working on it. 

How does this relate to instructional leadership and curriculum?

As busy as I am now and I feel the need to follow my mother’s advice.  I need to acknowledge the efforts of ministry folks whose strong work has been put on stop/pause.  These faceless champions are also teachers interested in promoting higher learning.  I must thank the local professionals who have made the best of our new assessment regime and accompanying software; and doing a wonderful job. Be gentle with yourselves, it’s an implementation year. As a result of the new assessment initiative we have developed key individuals who have become experts.  I have to thank the team members around me who diligently do their assigned tasks every day without much fanfare. Collectively these people do fine work and make all of us better. These wonderful team members at LSSD are an indispensable part of student learning – from curriculum and instruction to accounting to transportation.  If in my busy days I have forgotten to say thanks, I will correct that, we need everyone to move the student learning agenda forward.  The benefits are priceless. Our students, my mom and Piglet are counting on it.

April 14, 2014Permalink