Monday, May 23, 2016

Summer Meals Available for Kids in Storm Lake

This summer the Storm Lake Community School District will continue to expand its summer meal program. As in the past during summer school (June 13–June 30), breakfast and lunch will be served at the Elementary School. Meals will be moved to the High School from July 6–July 29 with only lunch being served from 11:00 to 1:00 PM. On August 1st meals will return to the Elementary with breakfast and lunch served until Friday, August 12th. The summer meal program allows anyone 18 years of age or younger to eat free. Adults may also eat at a cost of $3.35 for lunch and $1.95 for breakfast. --

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Weigh the Arguments before Deciding

There are few things in life that are simply black or white, right or wrong, or true or false. Mel Fisher's fourth graders provided a very good example of this concept today when they debated the topic Smartphones for Fourth Graders. The students decided which side they wanted to represent and then worked as pro and con teams to develop arguments supporting fourth graders having smartphones and arguments against fourth graders having smartphones.

Both sides did a very nice job of presenting their arguments. The group for smartphones provided the four person adult panel of judges with a handout outlining their reasons. The group against smartphones displayed a poster that they had created. The pro group presented their information like a choral reading. The con group took turns presenting their arguments. It was fun to see students working together so closely, to see them so engaged in their learning, and to see them evaluate a topic that really interested them.

It was a pleasure to see these students process their thinking and to see them realize that those who would pretend to live in a world of absolutes are going to struggle. Life is more like a spreadsheet with multiple columns. Weighing the arguments in the various columns and then making a decision is what day to day living is all about. Thanks, Mel Fisher, for inviting me!

Monday, May 2, 2016

Guilt Paralyzes

Even as an adult I get totally stuck sometimes
With something I don't particularly want to do
With something that's easy to put off
And put off
And put off

And then I start to worry about it
And worry about it
And worry about it
And lose sleep over it

And then I truly don't want to do it

And then comes the guilt
The guilt
The guilt

And the guilt
Portends recriminations from others, so I . . .

Put the task off even longer
And longer
And longer

What's the last thing I need when I reach this point and feel this way?
More guilt?
Recriminations from others?

I don't think so

A little love and support maybe
A little empathy and understanding

Funny how that works
Isn't it

Let's remember this when we deal with our students