A Dress Rehearsal for Life

_SJP8863By Katie Edde, Dean of Students

How do we teach children to learn from failure? As a parent of two Prep students, I know the temptation to rescue my girls from situations that may lead to failure or disappointment. I don’t want them to be hurt. Rather, I want them to grow up to be self-assured, resilient, independent, and hardworking. As dean of students in the Middle School, I want the same for the growing young people in our teachers’ care.

Someone once told me middle school is a dress rehearsal for life, and it’s true. As students mature and change during these pivotal growth years, they experience challenges that prepare them for adulthood. Bad grades happen, friendships aren’t easy, teams come up short, tempers flare, and tears fall. Educators know to look past the mistakes and see the shining light within each child.

Continue reading “A Dress Rehearsal for Life”

Overcoming The Culture of Perfectionism

ana-about
Ana Homayoun

By Latoya Pousa, Director of Community Life

We look forward to welcoming Ana Homayoun back to Charlotte Prep on Thursday, November 8 for the Community Partnership Series event, The Culture of Perfectionism. The evening begins with a reception at 6:00 p.m. and the presentation follows from 6:30 until 8:00. Childcare for Charlotte Prep students will be provided. A noted teen and millennial expert, author, school consultant, speaker and educator, Ana presented last year’s discussion on social media. Continue reading “Overcoming The Culture of Perfectionism”

Because We’re Happy…

By Melissa Guarnaccia, MSW, LCSW
School Counselor

I am often amazed at the smiles, laughs, and general happiness I observe as I enter various classrooms across all three divisions of Charlotte Prep. Just today I was able to see hearts open and smiles emerge as baby chicks hatched in the Early School. I was able to catch an impromptu dance party during a Lower School PE class, as well as a Middle School student assisting another on crutches while both grabbed on to each other in laughter.

Research shows that children need to be in a relaxed, calm, and happy state to be open to playing and learning. We all have this goal for our Charlotte Prep kids. As both a mother and school counselor, I strive to assist kids in learning to self-regulate their energy and emotions to be present at school and open to reaching their full potential.

We, as adults, tend to understand the need for children to be calm and regulated. But happy? How do we even clearly define happiness for our children? Adults can struggle to consider happiness as much as success, milestones, ability, or even the ideal weekly schedule.

These questions came to mind when recently reading the New York Times article, “Letting Happiness Flourish in the Classroom.” Are we able to “live in the moment” and “do nothing” with our children to foster creativity, problem-solving, and most importantly, happiness? There can be a disconnect at times between what we as a society teach our kids versus what we hope and envision for them long-term. Let us choose calm. Let us model happiness.

Note: Click here for another interesting article by the same author about fostering happiness in our children.

Coming Together Over Political Divisiveness

divisiveness-event-videoBy Eddie Mensah, Head of School

I began our panel on “Parenting in the Age of Political Divisiveness” last Wednesday by reminding everyone present that we would not be discussing our individual views on politics or which party we support. Instead, we’d be discussing what the current political climate is and how we can navigate these times with our children. What transpired was a thoughtful and engaging discussion that gave those present plenty to think about.

If you missed it, click here to watch our Facebook livestream of the event. You can also read our as-it-happened Twitter coverage here.

In the meantime, here are some takeaways from the evening that may spark some reflection for you: Continue reading “Coming Together Over Political Divisiveness”

Young Ladies in Leadership

YLLMiddle School students participate in clubs each Friday afternoon during the final period of the day. These classes range from Rock Climbing to Jazz Band to Young Ladies in Leadership. We asked eighth-graders Ashton D. and Erin B., who serve as the co-presidents of Young Ladies in Leadership, to give us a snapshot of what their organization is all about.

By Ashton D. and Erin B., Class of 2018

Young Ladies in Leadership is a club made up of seventh and eighth-grade young ladies who aspire to be innovators in their community. In our experience Young Ladies in Leadership is not only a club but also a family. It’s a place where we can go to talk about the things going on in our lives and feel comfortable while being surrounded by like-minded girls. At our age, many young women find themselves doubting their capabilities and unique characteristics. With a club like Young Ladies in Leadership, feeling alone seems like less of an outcome. Not only does the club give us a sense of ownership, but we also get to develop social skills and interact with people who are less fortunate than we are. Continue reading “Young Ladies in Leadership”

A Parent’s Perspective: Athletes with Character

The girls volleyball team are representing Charlotte Preparatory School well by truly demonstrating the Four Pillars, writes a Charlotte Prep parent.

girls-volleyballPrep parent Mandi Mohammed co-coaches the volleyball team. She wrote the following note to Head of School Eddie Mensah and Head of Middle School Evan Kurtz.

Mr. Kurtz & Mr. Mensah,

I just wanted to take a minute to say how much I have enjoyed co-coaching the volleyball team with Coach Evatt this season. These young ladies are representing Charlotte Prep well by truly demonstrating the Four Pillars.

Continue reading “A Parent’s Perspective: Athletes with Character”

Buddies Coming Together

2177by Evan Kurtz, Head of Middle School

Yesterday the Middle School and Lower School came together for our first BUDEE session of the year. An acronym for Be Understanding, Dedicated, Empathetic, and Engaged, our first gathering proved to be all of the above.

It can be challenging for Middle School students to be understanding of younger students, but I witnessed many of them connecting and communicating with their younger classmates. It was impressive how they were able to speak with the lower schoolers on their level while avoiding “babying” them.

Middle School students showed both dedication and empathy as they worked on the “get to know you” project with their Lower School buddies. Ask a 6th grader about the patience required to work with a kindergartener – that’s dedication! Empathy was on full display as 7th graders took to the floor, or filled small chairs to occupy the same physical space as the 2nd graders. This empathy will grow as buddies discuss issues in future meetings that each of them faces, albeit in their own ways.

These traits will continue as they remain engaged with the BUDEE program each month. I look forward to watching each relationship grow as students form bonds which will make our campus stronger and more together. Each Middle School student will also gain insights into their leadership style and skills from their work with their buddies, skills which will serve them well in many situations to come.