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Gillispie School / Parent strategies

Keeping our community well is our highest priority. As such, we have been monitoring our community health during the normal cold and flu season, and also in consideration of the media coverage of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus. It is important that families continue to monitor the health and wellbeing of their children and themselves, and take all necessary, routine precautions that we would expect: washing hands, remaining home from school for at least 24-hours following any symptoms...

It has been over a decade since Gillispie first rolled up its sleeves and hosted the first blood drive, and the tradition continues with our annual Grade 3 Blood Drive and Bake Sale February 11, 2020. An event that was organized to support a former Gillispie family affected by childhood leukemia has now turned into our blood drive--a life-saving, annual event that our local community depends on. Over the past ten years, our Gillispie blood donors have saved...

Now more than ever, it is crucial that children learn how to become creative and empathetic solution builders, and the development of the skills needed for success can begin as early as preschool. In order to give children the opportunity to hone their creative problem-solving skills, it is important for them to be allowed to construct their own knowledge and understanding of the world through both experience and reflection on those experiences. This approach is referred...

Our recent Early Childhood Parent Coffee featured a panel discussion about child nutrition, spurring a healthy ongoing conversation among parents. The speakers on the panel consisted of current Gillispie parents with backgrounds in nutrition, cooking, and treating eating disorders. A few key phrases that came up: “You provide, they decide.” “Don’t yuck my yum!” “Food is neutral.” Some interesting take-aways include the following tips: Include kids in the process of making a meal. Include them in grocery shopping, food preparation,...

At Gillispie, we recognize the importance of preparing children for a future that is increasingly lived online. We give students opportunities to research, communicate, and create using online tools across the curriculum and across grade levels. As children develop these important skills, they must also develop the ability to protect themselves and to behave appropriately while online. Digital citizenship is a recurring theme throughout Gillispie's program in Media Literacy classes and in any other class where online...

The family of a former student reached out to me recently with a dilemma: Although their oldest child was a voracious reader, their youngest child didn’t seem to be interested in books at all. The parents wondered if I might “work my magic” on their youngest child, to ignite the spark that would eventually become a raging fire for books. As flattered as I am to be credited with this power, the secret to turning reluctant readers...

Gillispie students PreK to Grade 6 were treated with visits from Practical Karate owner and Gillispie parent, Frank McCarroll, who engaged students in interactive workshops designed to help children create an environment of kindness at school and cope with confrontational or bullying behaviors from other students or strangers. Using the book Have You Filled a Bucket Today?: A Guide to Daily Happiness for Kids and his own experiences growing up, Frank showed students that making a conscious...

Recently, Gillispie welcomed Dr. Adria O’Donnell who spoke on ways in which we can instill resiliency in children, which in turn allows children to handle life’s stresses and to take on challenges. Having resiliency contributes to a child’s ability to recognize and regulate emotions. Dr. O’Donnell shared some helpful illustrations: The Blender When your child is emotionally charged, it is like a blender on full speed without the lid. In this state, it is not the right time...

In a recent Real Simple article, “How to Raise a Problem-Solver," writer Joanne Nesbit quotes a CEO of a cloud-based, reference-checking firm: “Young people’s ability to get things done on their own and take initiative is one of the biggest employer concerns.” Ms. Nesbit went on to advise how we can help children build these critical skills. Her ideas included allowing for open-ended, loosely-supervised play; providing opportunities for children to complete real-life tasks; asking our young ones...

Can you describe your family’s moral North Star? How do you serve one another, the world? If those questions seem tough to answer, you may have some work to do. You’ve probably noticed that most successful organizations have a mission statement, setting the framework for who they are, where they are going, and how to work together. These core values and beliefs are often critical to the ultimate success or failure of the business. Family is more...

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