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Principal's Message from Kevin Dorken
May 4, 2018

It’s Time to Finish Strong!

With our calendars having turned to May, we will be stressing the importance of Finishing Strong at school. It is a concept that I write and talk about every year around this time because of the increase in potential distractions (e.g., many special events, looking ahead to transitions, etc.) from the habits and hard work we’ve been engaged in all year. Just as any athletic contest requires a strong push until the very end, this is the time of year when we all need to sustain our energy, determination, and focus on the present. So while we’ve been dedicated to our school-wide guidelines for success all year – Be Safe, Be Kind & Give Your Best Effort – it is now up to everyone to focus on these to an even greater extent.

As a staff, Finishing Strong means continuing to keep our expectations high for learning and behavior (in many cases, viewing this time of year as needing as much structure, explicit communication, etc. as during the first month of school). Teachers will also be reflecting on the extent to which they have achieved goals for individual students thus far, as well as their collaborative team goals, and making the most of the time we have remaining to further that progress.

At home, you can encourage Finishing Strong through a continued (or renewed) commitment to positive routines related to nightly reading and homework completion, schedule planning, healthy diet, hygiene, adequate sleep, and prompt arrival to school each day. With the (finally!) improved weather, the time is ripe to recommit to limited screen time (see https://www.commonsensemedia.org/screen- time for some very helpful resources for families). Look for moments when you can slow things down and be fully present with your child(ren). In other words, this final “push” need not be anything intense, just a rededicated focus on simple but important things that foster a child’s well being – and your own!

There are many opportunities for celebration to come in the next few weeks, representing much hard work, including our Second Grade Program (May 23), Open House (May 24), Field Day (June 1) and more. We are looking forward to a rewarding and focused finish to our school year. We hope to see you at Lyon soon!