Welcome to our November newsletter! This is the month that just sneaks up on you. It is that time of year when you are super busy as parents, running around, driving everywhere, recovering from Halloween and fall sports and trying to make it all work for your family. But it is also the month to GIVE THANKS.
At Education Connection Advisors, we are thankful for:
- Our admission directors who participated in our seminar
- Our preschool directors who coordinated our panel and those who lend us support
- Our parents, children and clients who we continue to help with school concerns
- Our readers who may find one new nugget of information from this newsletter helpful
- Our team and our own families
In this newsletter we are discussing The WHOLE CHILD which also includes THE WHOLE PERSON. This idea is not new but it has had a resurgence since Covid.
Let us explain our vision of the Whole Person:
If you are opening an umbrella and looking up, it is made with many spokes. Each spoke is an extension of the whole umbrella. If you think of yourself or your child as the umbrella, the individual spokes are necessary to the functioning of the umbrella. We look at the following “spokes” working together to make the whole person function. Our “whole person umbrella” is built of resilience, honesty, respect, positivity, justice and learning. Now you can branch out into the following 6 areas:
What do these “spokes” mean for you or your children?:
Physical Health– hours of sleep or sleep patterns; nutrition; fitness and core stamina; vision checks; dental screening and hearing checks. We want our families to take good care of themselves and be proactive.
Mental Health– The state of your well being is critical today. How are your coping skills, your ability to handle things? Are you being productive? Are you living up to your individual potential? Are you making good choices and decisions? Is your life filled with joy?
Cognitive Development– This is an important part of your children’s school life or even your world. Memory, attention, perception, problem solving and executive functioning skills. Do our children know how to study, take visual and audio clues and process the information? What is the learning style of each person? Can we learn information and retain what we learn?
Social Emotional Development– How do we function and interact with others? Can we handle stress, self regulate, make new friends and keep them? Can we handle new situations and be good citizens?
Identity Development– What are your values, your goals? Are you a confident person? Are you stronger on the sports field or stronger in the academic world? What is your purpose and where do you fit in your community? How is your self esteem? How do you feel about yourself?
Academic Learning– This area is mostly for our children and has to do with learning skills from birth onward. The academic part of the umbrella can be overly emphasized because your children are evaluated on their academic learning each day at school, but we think it’s important to remember that academic learning also relies on the other spokes of the umbrella. If you have motivation for success, if you build positive relationships, if you have confidence in self, those components all help you in your academic journey.
To be a whole person, your umbrella must be open and functioning. Umbrellas can break or have a weaker spoke. You are not perfect and your umbrella is not either.
Our Fall Reading Recommendations:
Reader Come Home: The Reading Brain in a Digital World (Maryanne Wolf): This book uses research to help her reader understand the importance of teaching literacy and reading for developing cognitive and emotional processes.
Invisible Child: Poverty, Survival and Hope in an American City (Andrea Elliott): The author, a journalist, follows eight years in the life of Dasani, a child in Brooklyn, and her educational journey, homelessness and the welfare system. This Pulitzer Prize winning book is both heartbreaking and beautiful, not to be missed.
Game: An Autobiography (Grant Hill): A particularly enjoyable Audible listen, read by the author, this memoir tells the journey of Grant Hill and his family through his own words.
Remarkably Bright Creatures (Shelby Van Pelt): A heartwarming story with great characters, one of whom is an octopus. Well written, this book is light and uplifting.
True Biz (Sara Novic): This novel’s main characters are students at a boarding school for deaf children. The story weaves in information about ASL and raises topics within the deaf community that many people are unaware of, emphasizing the importance of human connection. This is a great read that is entertaining and educational.
Horse (Geraldine Brooks): Brooks’ new historical fiction novel transports the reader back and forth between a slave who grooms horses in 1850s Kentucky and a current day art historian at the Smithsonian. The author successfully connects both stories through a painting and makes the reader want to keep turning the page.
Lessons in Chemistry (Bonnie Garmus): The protagonist in this story is chemist, Elizabeth Zott, who is ahead of her time in the 1960s. She finds a way to use her intellect and gain influence by teaching a TV cooking class. A lovely story that even involves the perspective of her dog.
Let us know what you’ve been reading! We always love recommendations, especially as we head into the holiday season.
Education Connection Advisors continues to focus on the Whole Person. We specialize in helping families understand their children. We specialize in school placement in Atlanta, boarding schools, school concerns and relocation to our area.
Email us or call us. Send us your thoughts and ideas. Forward to a friend who may be interested. We care about you.
Barbara, Betsy, Fontaine and Margo