I find it difficult to write a blog post regarding a specific example of pride as I, truthfully, am proud of so many things that happen within our classrooms, our hallways, and our Westonka community. Throughout my years at Mound Westonka High School I have continually found myself inspired by the actions of my students, my co-workers and the involved members of our local community.
A few weeks ago, after one of our Westonka Summer Institute Classes had wrapped up for the evening, I happened to walk by Mr. Bulman’s classroom where, at 8:30 p.m., he was viewing a movie with his students. Did this activity fit into the defined hours of his teaching contract? Of course not, but Mr. Bulman had elected to spend the evening with his students because he knew it would enhance their educational experience.
During my drive home that night I contemplated how many teachers were still in the building as the moon was shining brightly in the sky. In that same moment I also started to reflect upon all of the extraordinary efforts of my co-workers. I started to think about all the little things that they do because they truly enjoy their occupations and care about the kids that they work with every day.
For the remaining few weeks of the school year, I started noting some of the significant things the people I work with do to make the kids they work with know they care. Here is just a sampling of some extraordinary efforts:
- Mrs. Howard writing a letter to ALL of the graduating seniors in her classes, wishing them well and encouraging them to push themselves. For the record, Mrs. Howard teaches a lot of seniors.
- Mrs. Blanchard staying late into the evening to empty a kiln for her students, a task that one of her students discussed with me for several minutes during passing time. In her words, “Mrs. Blanchard is the best teacher ever, who does that?”
- Mrs. Lyngby developing a final lesson for her CIS class that inspired an incredible amount of enthusiasm for learning. For the final two weeks of the school year her students showed up at 6:30 a.m., extremely excited to prepare for a lesson they were about to teach. I have never witnessed students so excited about a project or, truthfully, a teacher.
- Mrs. Schwartz stopping to talk to most of the teachers in the building prior to the sections track meet, checking in to see what her track athletes would be missing in the classroom while competing at the end of the season. It was a clear indication that she was not only concerned about their competitive success but also about their academic success.
- Mrs. Paul writing an incredibly engaging speech for graduation that was shared prior to the reading of roll. It was spot on, funny, and heartfelt. During a very busy time of the year I don’t know how she found the time to script such a fantastic speech.
- Mr. Randklev, although buried in paperwork, taking the time to fulfill my request to borrow a graduation gown for a display case. Are you kidding me? Why did I need it then and why did he honor my random request? Because that’s what he does for just about anyone.
- The custodians discussing the possibility of a custodial exchange program with China after asking several questions about our WSI China trip. It was obvious that they were inquiring about the possibility because they were excited for our kids and the opportunity they had in front of them.
- Mr. Atkinson making math fun. I cannot begin to explain how many 8th grade students have shared with me that Mr. Atkinson is their favorite teacher because he is good at teaching and is really funny. However, I’ve heard some of his jokes (repeated by students several times) and I have come to the conclusion that 8th graders have a unique sense of humor.
- Ms. Bormes organizing everything and doing it with grace, a sense of humor and a positive attitude. What would we do without her?
- The Guidance Department. Enough said.
The faculty and staff of Mound Westonka High School
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