Jon's Weekly Update 3-16-18

posted Mar 16, 2018, 9:16 AM by Cynthia Friedman
IMPORTANT DATES:               
Fri, March 23 6-8pm                  'Olekona (Jon's Hawaiian Band) Performs with Neal Chin FREE!
Mon-Fri, March 26-30               NO SCHOOL: SPRING BREAK
Mon, April 2                               NO SCHOOL: Professional Development
Thur, May 3, 8am-4pm              Canopy Connections (7th) and Tree2Tree (8th) Field Trips
Sat, May 19 3-5:30pm                TRUE Performance: Student Uke Jam, Whirled Pies   
Fri, June 1, 6-8pm                      8th Grade Graduation
Mon-Thur, June 11-14               Middle School Adventure Trip

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Dear Middle School Family,

Today, Wednesday, March 14, 2018, was a very emotional day for all of us. Over half of our middle school students, and many upper and lower el students, chose to accept the consequences of an "unexcused absence" to walk out of school and march in support of stricter gun laws.

Horns were honked by passing cars, fists were raised, parents showed up in force to support the students who chose to stand up. The students gathered in the small open patch of mud and grass at the intersection of Fox Hollow and the Amazon Parkways to share strong words about fear. Strong words about empowerment of our youth.

I went along to make sure that everyone stayed out of traffic, and out of trouble.

When we got back to school, spirits were high, and so was tension. Not all of the students chose to march. After our class meeting, a small group of students was arguing in a corner of the classroom, so we reconvened our community circle.

At the beginning of the school year, we identified the three main ground rules for our community: protect each other's Physical, Intellectual, and Emotional safety. Brandon made it easy to remember: "Safety Pie."

Today being Pi day, it was a brilliant segue into an important conversation. The risk of an armed gunman coming into our classroom is small. The risk each of us face every day as we come to school and try to be our full Self is great. How we treat each other when we disagree will literally change the World.

We had a deep conversation about listening to understand each other's reality, and accepting them as Real and Authentic! And expecting the same in return. There is no 'winning' a conversation by convincing someone you're right. The best we can hope for is improved understanding on both sides of the conversation. Getting to know one another better.

Our Global Studies projects have opened our students to some deep and hard truths about the world we live in. Their writing is improving, their speaking is improving. Their depth of understanding and care for the world we live in, and they are inheriting, is literally blowing my mind.

We filmed our fourth episode of the RMS World News last Tuesday, while I was out sick.

It just gets better and more real.

I am deeply proud of our kids. Both those who chose to march, and those who chose not to march. Neither group just "went along for the ride." They all stood for something. They all had a reason for how they chose to participate in the National student uprising.

We're proud of ALL of our kids for their courage today.

Sincerely,
Jon and Maizzy
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