Principally Speaking

We'll Keep Getting Stronger

Good Morning, Mr. Finger!

Last week, I was walking down the hallway in school...flashback time...Years ago I was visiting classrooms, and a second grader said to me, "Mr. Finger, I want your job." "Why?" I asked. "Because all you have to do is walk around the school all day and visit classrooms." There you have it - a second grader's perspective on the job of a principal, but I digress.

Anyway, while I was walking down the hall last week at Cold Spring, one of our students, who happened to be walking the other direction, said to me, "Good Morning, Mr. Finger." After I replied to him and we went on our separate ways, I thought to myself, "What a nice young man! And what a nice thing to say!" Then I thought to myself, "I wonder if my four children greet their teachers/principals this way when they pass them in the hallway? Do they know how to initiate a conversation with others or engage in a conversation that someone begins with them?"

Years ago my wife and I took a parenting course, and I distinctly remember one of the lessons about teaching your children to "engage" in conversations, especially with adults. The tip I remember the most was to prepare your kids for these encounters. For example, if you are on your way to a large gathering (i.e., church, family birthday party, etc.) you should prep your children ahead of time. Maybe you say something like, "Delainey, when we get to church, if someone says "Good Morning, Delainey, how are you today?" what will you say to them?" Basically you are preparing your child for the adult interaction and teaching them the appropriate way to respond.

Every night when I get home from work, one of the first questions I ask my kids (in addition to whether or not their homework is done) is, "Tell me what did you do in school today?" Notice I do not ask, "How was school today?" because I have learned not to ask my children questions that can be answered with a one word answer like "Fine." I have heard that answer more than I care to remember. But I digress...AGAIN!!!

After my encounter with that fine, young man in the hallway last week, I am thinking that I need to add some additional questions to my nightly repertoire, and they would be, "Did you have any good conversations today?" "Did you greet any of your teachers?" "Did you ask someone how their day was going?" After all, aren't the answers to these questions just as important as what they learned in Math or whether or not their homework is finished?

Hat Day w/a Cause

This Friday, any student who brings $1 to school will be permitted to wear a hat in school all day long.** All money raised will go to support the Children's Tumor Foundation, a foundation which supports families dealing with neurofibromatosis, of which we have one here at Cold Spring. You can read more about this foundation at the following link (

** Students can give their donation to their homeroom teacher.

Important February Dates

3rd - Choose Kind Week begins

7th - Hat Day (donate $1 and wear a hat all day during school)

17th - President's Day (No school)