Connection – Shady Oak Primary School


We Develop Connections With Our Students, Staff, And Parents

Many will argue that you need to get right to the job of teaching, but we know that to be an effective teacher you must foster strong feelings of safety and connection. Without this essential foundation, everything else you do will be ineffective. We have made the commitment to spend the first two weeks of school each year focused on developing relationships and setting clear expectations. This commitment to building a culture that values connection allows us to focus on our students and help them to discover the way they learn best.

As educators, we know the importance of making connections with our students as well as with our staff and community members. We work closely with our educational partners. We welcome input from our parents and build close ties with the members of our community. Our students give back each year to their ‘village’ during our Week of Giving. We instill a strong sense of community both on our campus and within our town of Richmond, Texas.

We Are Committed To Developing Deep Connections

From the moment a student comes through our doors, they become our utmost priority and a part of our family. Our commitment to the whole child allows for transformation and growth in spirit, character, and mind. The connections and rich fulfilling relationships they create prepare our students for a better future. Modeling those connections with each other in school gives them the tools to grow in their other relationships.

We End Each Day With A Compliment Circle

It is necessary for our students to create positive connections. During the daily compliment circle, students give each other deep and meaningful compliments that speak to the positive things they witnessed in each other during the day. Each student tells the student next to them a compliment.  For example, a student may say: “Today I noticed you figured out that math problem after you tried and tried, and what that tells me about you is that you are very persistent”.

Throughout the day we acknowledge our students using ‘irrefutable evidence’ from the Nurtured Heart Approach, which allows the recognition to be easily accepted by our pupils. Even when a person doesn’t feel worthy or care about your opinion, stating a fact does allow for the rebuilding and strengthening of one’s self esteem very effectively. (For more information on how we use the Nurtured Heart Approach contact Mrs. Elder at [email protected]. )

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