Dear Parents,
It’s that time of year again. Time to finalize that Poetry and Prose piece and begin memorizing lines. For some, this annual event brings a smile to the face. For others, fear and dread. I can relate to both responses. The most memorable year for me was when my youngest son chose to memorize “Charge of the Light Brigade” in fourth grade. We spent hours together in our sunroom working on memorizing lines, creating loud and soft voice inflections, and adding a gesture here and there. We were sure he had a “winning” presentation that year.  But once again, as had been the case in previous years, Justin made it to round two, but ultimately never made it to the finals. By sixth grade, he struggled to want to try. “Why bother?” he wondered. “I’ll never win the prize, after all.”
It was hard to convince him back then, and even now on some days as he works through his final days of high school, that in the long run, there really is a prize for all that hard work. This prize may not be shiny and sit on a mantel, but it has a lot more value. What’s the prize for asking our children to persist, even if they never win; work hard even if it’s never noticed; and never give up even when it seems the victory may never come? The prize, I have found, is a persevering, hard-working young adult, able to weather the storms life will inevitably bring, encourage others in their own struggles, and eventually become leaders of their own lives.
So, as your child begins the fairly arduous task of memorizing a timeless piece of poetry or prose, I encourage you to keep in mind that it’s not just about a physical prize. It’s about so much more than that. I sincerely hope you enjoy the process, and even if not, you can rest assured that all this labor does result in a tangible prize, just perhaps one you might have to wait a little longer to see.
Warm regards,
Susan Hofer
Got a minute to read more? 
Here’s an article by Dr. Tim Elmore addressing what research is suggesting may be the most important quality students will need in the future.
For the last several years, Mr. Breazeale has held “Moving Up” meetings in February designed to help parents get a picture of what their child’s next year in school might look like; I would like to continue this tradition by offering the dates and times below. Grab a cup of coffee, join me in the atrium, and we will enjoy looking at the developmental milestones and general class expectations your child will encounter as they move up to the next grade level.
All meetings will take place after drop-off at 8:00 in the atrium, and should last 30-45 minutes.
January 30: Rising First Graders
February 1: Rising Second Graders
February 6: Rising Third Graders
February 8: Rising Fourth Graders
February 13: Rising Fifth Graders
February 15: Rising Kindergarteners
February 20: Rising Sixth Graders
January 26: Chick-fil-A Fun Night in Founders Hall (Basketball games) – Dress like a cow and participate in half-time competitions for fun prizes. JV Game 4:15pm, Girls Game 5:30pm, Varsity Boys Game 7:00pm.
January 29: Next Re-enrollment email will be sent to all families
January 30: Moving Up Meeting: Rising First Graders
February 1: Poetry and Prose selections finalized with classroom teacher
February 1: Moving Up Meeting: Rising Second Graders
February 6: Moving Up Meeting: Rising Third Graders
February 8: Moving Up Meeting: Rising Fourth Graders