January Blog Challenge Day 24

TGIF (Part 1): My favorite colleague  and why I love working with her.


I met my favorite colleague, Janna,  during a job interview three years ago.  She was interviewing to replace our building principal and I had been invited to sit on the interview committee.  At the conclusion of the interview my immediate reaction was, “She’s the one!”  and she’s been my principal and friend since then.

Why do I love working with her?  Janna is the ultimate professional and all about kids.    She pushes her staff to always be the best they can be and trusts in them as professionals to make the right decisions for students.  She regularly celebrates our individual and collective accomplishments.  She values the work we do.  She is a champion for our youngest learners when they are often considered to be “just Kindergarten” by so many.  She juggles the demands of a K-4 building of over 750 students always with a smile.

Janna is more than my  principal.  I  consider her a friend.  We are Book Buddies and enjoy discussing our latest reads.  In fact,  during her interview she shared titles that influenced her leadership, I went right out and bought two of the titles right away,  Strengths Finder  by Tom Rath and The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller.   Since then we’ve debated all of Malcolm Galdwell’s books, compared stories of youth basketball, football and the likenesses of our sons, swapped gardening tips, and navigated our way through learning how to use Twitter.  We do like to read for fun too, but the “thinking” books lend themselves to our great conversations.  I like to think we respectfully challenge each other on occasion.  She pops in to our classroom,often  during most chaotic times of the day, and doesn’t even seem to notice the noise level and “enthusiasm for learning” taking place.

TGIF(Part 2): My favorite colleagues  and why I like working with them.

I’m breaking the rules today.  When I posted this photo of my Kindergarten team it was Wordless Wednesday and there’s too much I have to say about my team.

20140124-195614.jpgFirst and foremost, they aren’t just my grade level team. They are my friends.

Trina – has a huge heart!  She’s  witty at just the right times,  quite useful with her Pinterest addiction, and the social event organizer of the team. Sharing stuff  and helping is the way Trina rolls.

Alyssa – the young one!  Young, but wise beyond her years. Challenging classes will do that.   She brings a touch of fresh, pure innocence to the team, which of course makes us crack up.

Kelli – the organized one!  When no one else can find it, Kelli can, or  she whips up a brand new one.  She has the ability to stay calm under any conditions such as kicking, screaming, and other assorted hostile behaviors. She too, can locate valuable items in the Pinterest world and You Tube and is always willing to share.

Beth –  the comic relief!  She helps keeps things light.  She is the official  time keeper as well as keeper of the binders, and amazing at completing charts.  Got a science question?  Ask Beth.

Becky –  the  numbers gal!  She knows everyone’s birthdate, age, spouses and children’s birthdates and ages, anniversaries and the school calendar even when it changes every year.  She’s the  Excel expert and data collector of the team. She hosts an awesome Pumpkin carving event each Halloween for us all.

I enjoyed taking time to reflect for this challenge.  Actually, I’ve been reflecting on my colleagues for quite some time.  You see, the principal will be leaving to open a new school in our district and our team will ultimately be split up to accommodate the two buildings.  I’m treasuring each day we have left together.


One thought on “January Blog Challenge Day 24

  1. You didn’t think you would get to hide without us responding what we love about you, did you?  Patty is not only kindergarten teacher extraordinaire, but she is a teacher leader for her team, our building, and the district. She is a professional through and through, looking for the solutions for children first and then the adults. Patty is always a learner, which is why we have connected over so many books and ideas, trying to figure out how the new learning can help us be better for our students. She is an amazing person, teacher, leader, mother, and friend. A model for us in how she learns new things in all realms of her life and takes them on to the fullest. We laugh all the time how we think so much alike, but the biggest secret is I want to be just like Patty Nault. All in all, Patty makes me better as a principal, and teachers like that change the world, not just their classrooms.

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