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September 30, 2020 | Sam Choi
This phrase or some variation of it, has been part of your child’s Mustard Seed experience from the very beginning. At the preschool level, they learned to look beyond themselves and became part of a larger group. They were taught life skills such as making friends, communicating, apologizing, forgiving and working with others. As they progressed through the rest of school, they continued to plan and work with others even as their idea of community expanded through service. By the time they reach eighth grade, the students are no longer expected to be just members of a community but rather its leaders.
This year because of its unique circumstances, the eighth graders have not been given the opportunity to lead in the middle school in the usual ways. In previous years, they would have been placed in teams and given responsibilities as well as roles that would help them develop leadership skills. At park, as the oldest students, they would have helped organize and lead games. So how do we help the eighth graders grow as leaders?
I am hoping that we will be doing more whole school service projects where the eighth graders can take the lead. Also, I am hoping we can look outside of the school and help the eighth graders engage civically and feel more part of the local, national and global community.