The way we talk to children becomes their inner voice – Peggy O’Mara
I remember towards the end of high school going for my first job interview and my brother giving me some advice. As he simply put it, "Eye contact, smile, firm handshake." This was not necessarily the advice I was looking for, but I took and it proved successful, as they say, first impressions count.
At BISC Lincoln Park we place high regard in academic achievement and rigor, but we also recognize the importance of building character and values within our students. As adults, modeling and demonstrating life skills to children is key. When we speak to one another, we make eye contact. When we want to speak to someone who is in the middle of a conversation, we wait patiently. When someone holds the door for us, we say, "Thank you." We do all these things because they are based on showing respect for one another. Respect is just one of the many values that is part of our unique personal and social development curriculum.
Such lessons may seem arbitrary, but these are life skills. Skills which unfortunately can be neglected in the rush of everyday life. Our students are taught to succeed for life in the wider world because something as simple of being able to make eye contact when speaking to another could turn into that first successful job interview. As a community, when we work together, we grow stronger and what a wonderful environment that is for a child to grow and learn in.
Douglas McNeill is the Learning Resource leader for BISC Lincoln Park.