"In the Know" Weekly Newsletter - The International School

Update from Robert - Dec 9, 2013

Dear Parents,

Thank you so much to all the families who contributed to our wonderful staff holiday party this past Saturday night! Special thanks to Janet Lo, Lori Schallich, Lisa Goldberg and Karla Nutt who put it all together. It was a fun, festive party, and we enjoyed a unique opportunity to socialize outside of school and meet our colleagues spouses and significant others. This was a great example of the Learner Profile attribute of Caring in so many ways!

We have all spent a lot of time talking about the Learner Profile this year, and the staff in particular has been talking about how it applies to so many of our actions and interactions. When the Learner Profile guides all community members - teachers, admin staff, parents, trustees, and students - we all learn more, enjoy school more, address challenges more easily, and improve what we do every day.

It's interesting to me to think about how each of the Learner Profile attributes can have so many different applications and interpretations. For example, we may think about "open-minded" with regards to accepting people who are different than we are. We can also be open-minded about new approaches to problems, trying a new food, some school rule that may seem silly, and some characteristic of our children that perhaps we hadn't fully accepted. Being "balanced" can mean finding a healthy work-family equilibrium, considering different perspectives, having different kinds of friends, and having good physical health.

Many situations call on multiple attributes, and those attributes may be different for each person. Asking a question in class may bring out the "courageous", the "inquirer", the "thinker", and the "knowledgeable" in different students to different degrees.

As we are explaining, examining, and cultivating the Learner Profile attributes with all of our students and staff, we are developing a common vocabulary and way of interacting that serve us well both in good times and in resolving the inevitable challenges. I encourage you to take another look at the Learner Profile (intlschool.org/learner-profile) and to see how you can reinforce those lessons at home. Perhaps you can focus on our "attribute of the month" (always at the top of Upcoming Events in ITK), take turns picking an attribute to discuss over dinner, or simply use the vocabulary of the attributes to help set expectations in your family at home ("I'm glad that you could be courageous; next time you do that I need you to communicate more").

Have a great week,

- Robert
Robert Woods, Head of School, RWoods@intlschool.org, 503-226-2496 x122