The Ups and the downs! It in together!

Written by Chelle Wabrek, Assistant Head of School for Academic Affairs
Does anyone feel like we haven’t switched from a sprint to a marathon, but are actually running a marathon at sprint pace?
In our touch base with faculty on Thursday, Meredyth and I were lucky enough to hear from many of you, including our own Cross Country coach who truly understand the weight of this metaphor.  It was great to hear your voices! 

We have two more times schedule for the upcoming week -- Tuesday morning at 7:00 a.m. or Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. The time allows for Q and A, but also some time to hear each other’s voices and inspire each other…..like the teacher who offered up the Glennon Doyle quote, “But what 'crisis' means literally is 'to sift' - like a child who goes to the beach, lifts up the sand, and watches all the sand fall away, hoping that there's treasure left over. That's what crisis does.” Thank you for sifting with us.

We have lots to celebrate this week!  Lovett teachers know how important it is to get down at kid height -- virtually or in person, synchronously or asynchronously. Meeting our students face to face, right at their level to help them understand they have our full attention, giving rise to  feelings of safety and agency. 
Other teachers reflected on student attention in virtual learning.  There is a reason TED capped their talks at 18 minutes! Interestingly, many of our students are able to direct far more focused attention at a screen, making instructional time significantly more impactful. 
Still others reflected on the powerful questions students are able to ask in this virtual setting. Students benefited from lots of small group where those who haven’t asked questions all year, or haven’t come to a tutorial despite the enthusiastic bidding of a teacher, were able to show vulnerability in new ways.
The computer that stood between student and student or student and teacher created just the right amount of distance for students to ask questions and seek help in direct and powerful way. 

Creativity is at a high with all sort of new ideas and Google hacks flying through our emails. We are inspiring each other and our students are inspiring us in new ways.  Take the advisor who has a student write, “Sally sells seashells by the seashore,” in a fun, early morning advisory chat and turn it into creative writing.
Or watch the LS YouTube channel, highlighting the creativity of our students….

….but only after they recite the pledge together…..
I love that we are able to laugh at our mistakes as well. This is new territory.  The wheels WILL come off the bus more than once and it is important that we remember to laugh.  Talking to our students while muted, finding yourself in a rousing game of Kahoot only to lose internet connectivity, or sharing a screen with your Amazon shopping cart open when you push share.  Our students get it quicker than we do and they have been patient and kind.

One of my own students waited until everyone in our class was in the Meet and he popped himself in with a dramatic entrance blasting Miley Cyrus and his vaporizer (his steam machine) blasting in front of him.
It brought a much needed laugh for all.  We need a new hashtag #LovettLaughs

Each of you is greatly missed on campus.  Just ask the security guards, who faithfully are keeping our spaces safe.

To quote Reid French, Lovett’s Board Chair, in a meeting earlier this week, “The only thing more contagious than a virus is hope.” And nothing says hope more than the newest Lovetteer -- US History Teacher, Alex Douglas, welcomed baby Evelyn at 5:45 this morning, coming in at 7 lbs 5 oz. Mother and daughter (and dad) are both doing well.  
Counting all of you, and baby Evelyn, among my many blessings this week!

With gratitude, 
Chelle
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