By Melissa Guarnaccia, MSW, LCSW
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.
By 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”
By Eddie Mensah, Head of School
Social media is a real-time battleground of competing, intensely-held opinions that reflect our society’s widening political divides. Here’s one thing we can all agree on: Parenting today is not for the faint of heart. Why? Our kids are watching and listening.
For some parents, the answer to the loud voices arguing all around us is to stop talking about politics or the day’s news altogether. It’s easier to talk about yesterday’s soccer match or tomorrow’s algebra quiz. But sometimes the difficult conversations are the ones we most need to have.
When it comes to kids, being proactive beats being reactive. So, here’s a proactive step you can take when it comes to being a role model for civility amid differences of opinion. Make plans now to attend our next Prep Parent Partnership Event, “Parenting in the Age of Political Divisiveness,” on Wednesday, April 11 at 6:30 p.m. in the Gymnasium Foyer.
Click here to RVSP. Then, take a look at the video below for author, researcher, and mom Brene Brown’s quick take on this critical topic:
Traveling for spring break? Planning a staycation? Put on your favorite Prep sportswear and participate in our first photo contest. To enter, take a photo of an individual or group wearing Prep apparel during spring break and post it on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram by April 1 using the hashtag #PrepPrideWorldwide. We’ll feature our favorite entries in a Facebook photo gallery and select some winners to receive a prize pack of One Prep gear.
And to inspire you, here’s a special Spring Break Interview conducted by our Communications Assistant, Sixth Grader Gio A.:
By Sharon Vanella, Head of Early School
Recently, the Early School staff had the wonderful opportunity to participate in the Montessori Educational Programs International (MEPI) Hands for Peace Conference in Kiawah, SC. This annual Montessori conference brings together educators from around the world for two days of workshops, keynote speakers, and fellowship. For our Early School teachers, it was a time to reconnect with each other and with other Montessorians outside the four walls of our classrooms, reaffirm our love of Montessori philosophy and our reasons for choosing the Montessori path, and to learn from other experts in the field. Workshops offered throughout the conference focused on a wide variety of topics, so we were all able to choose those we found enriching, enlightening, and useful for bringing information back to the classroom and to the Charlotte Prep community.
Continue reading “Walking the Walk and Talking the Talk”
Middle 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”
By Emily Tucker, STEM Specialist
As a nod to the Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, which ended Sunday, Charlotte Prep added an Olympic twist to our annual STEM Winterfest event! Prep held its first-ever STEM Olympics on February 8, where over 50 Prep families participated.
Continue reading “Prep Holds Its First-Ever STEM Olympics at Winterfest”