Lighthouse School Newsletter
October 21, 2020
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Mr. B's Corner
Your Lighthouse Teacher/Facilitators have shared that, although virtual, it was great to reconnect with families during Fall Conferences. Thanks for your continued partnership!
One thing that always comes up at fall conferences is perfectionism. Oftentimes, perfectionism rears its head as work avoidance. This work avoidance is quite regularly disguised with words like; “I don’t like,” “I hate,” “why is ___ important,” etc. These words are unintended placeholders for; “this is too hard,” “I’m not good at ___,” “I don’t value this because there are other things that I am great at and this takes too much work.” This topic relates quite directly with last week’s Mr. B’s corner discussion of The Gap,” by Ira Glass of “This American Life” on National Public Radio. Watch the video here. There are many reasons why students avoid work, including perfectionism.
According to Unlimited Potential Gifted Child Counselor, Emily Kircher-Morris, there are three types of perfectionist:
- Self-oriented perfectionism
- Socially-prescribed perfectionism
- Others-oriented perfectionism
These types of perfectionism are often difficult to parse out as there are many overlaps, but these types do illuminate areas of discussion. For instance, “do I have such high pressure on myself because I think my family expects so much of me,” or “do I avoid ____ because I am not good at it and I would rather fail by not trying or avoiding than, inevitably, admit failure because I am not good at ____,” or “am I trying for perfect because I want to go to a prestigious school.” In each of these cases the overlap of perfectionistic type is quite evident. Although understanding that there are different types of perfectionism may help to illuminate the topic, it may be more important to understand strategies for overcoming the negative aspects associated with perfectionism.
- The President of the Minnesota Council for Gifted and Talented, Dr. Teresa Boatman, shares the 93% Rule. She contends that many gifted kids should be encouraged to aim for 93% on those things that they are not naturally inclined or interested to study as a way to save time to dive into their interests further and protect their self-identity. Many kids protect their identity by doing poorly on something at the last minute so they have an excuse built in for why they did poorly. She further shares that it often takes as much effort to get from 93% to PERFECT as it does to get to 93%. Some things, she contends, are worth the added prioritization while others may not be worth the heartache.
- Related to the 93% Rule, Emily Kircher-Morris shares that we should Avoid Goal-Vaulting. Oftentimes GT kids aim for perfect even when they have just started a new task. Instead of aiming for perfect, we should set shorter-term attainable goals.
- Utilize BOTH/AND rather than either/or.
- I can do my best AND I might need to continue working
- I can do this work AND it might be hard
- This may not interest me AND it is important
- Call it what it is. It is important to acknowledge that work avoidance is happening because of perfectionism. Just having this conversation can help a child understand themselves.
- Apologize. Apologizing for a perfectionist child can be very hard. Having a perfectionist child apologize when appropriate shows vulnerability, self-awareness, and shows that the world continues despite their imperfect actions. There is life after imperfection.
It can be quite frustrating to see work avoidance, for sure, but it is important to understand the underlying causes to be able to figure out a solution. It may be a lack of interest, it may be a way to save one’s self from the heartache of doing poorly despite putting in the effort, or it may be some other reason entirely. Although challenging, it is important to continue to support your child’s interests and affinities even if they are showing work avoidance in other areas.
As always, thanks for entrusting your child(ren) to Lighthouse School for Gifted and Insatiable Learners,
The sights and sounds of Spring Lake Park Schools in 2020
In a normal year, families have opportunities to visit school. In a normal year, they can see firsthand what their student's day is like. Unfortunately, this isn't a normal year. That's why we've brought some of the sights and sounds from the first few weeks of this school year to you.
Yesterday, we saw the temperature drop below freezing while we saw the skies drop snow. And because it is just October, many students came unprepared for the cold and snow. Please ensure that your child comes prepared for the Minnesota elements. If it is cold, students should plan to bring a coat, a hat, and mittens. If there is snow on the ground, students should plan to bring winter boots. If students plan to play in the snow, snowpants are a great idea.
- Coats will be stored on the backs of chairs in their classroom
- Boots will be stored in the front of lockers on carpet runners
Apply now: Free or reduced-price meal benefits provide much more than food
The deadline to apply for free and reduced-price meal benefits is approaching on October 28, 2020. Please take a few minutes to complete and submit the application - even if you don't think you will qualify. It's about much more than meals.
You could be eligible for:
- Reduced fares on Metro Transit through the Transit Assistance Program. Anyone in a household with a student receiving Free or Reduced Lunch is eligible to receive this reduced fare.
- Reduced fees for athletics and activities
- Reduced fees for in-home internet access
A new application must be completed each school year. Families who have not applied for these benefits should apply right away.
Questions? Contact the Nutrition Services Department at 763-600-5041.
COVID-19 Community Testing Locations
There are several ways – including many that are free – to get tested for COVID-19. You may attend a Minnesota Department of Health community testing event, or use the MDH look-up tool (filter it by county and/or city) to find a testing location near you. For more information, please view our website.
Mark your calendar: Picture day is coming!
Mark your calendars for student pictures to be taken at school:
- Wednesday, November 11 – Students in Extended Flexible Learning (distance learning), students that were absent during the October picture dates, and PSEO students.
We will provide more information about the schedule for this day and health and safety precautions in the next few weeks.
Lighthouse student Natalie Horwath is a National Merit Semifinalist
Natalie Horwath, a senior at Lighthouse School for Gifted and Insatiable Learners, has been named a National Merit semifinalist. More than 1.5 million juniors entered the competition last spring by taking the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test (PSAT). Natalie was 1 of only 288 Minnesota students to qualify as a semifinalist. Read the full story on Natalie's accomplishment on the website.
Students design face masks to address common problems
Face masks. They have quickly become a standard part of daily life along with their problems – from discomfort to inconvenience. The popular high school class, “How To Make Almost Anything,” took on the COVID-timely face mask in their first design project of the year. Students were tasked with creating face mask prototypes that meet both health and safety guidelines while also addressing comfort, aesthetic and everyday wear considerations. Read more about this project and the student mask prototype designs.
Register Now for Upcoming Youth and Adult Community Education Classes
Community Education has a number of youth and adult programs available now for registration. Visit the website to view availability and details or call Community Education at 763-600-5050.
Take-Home Art Activities
For youth, take-home art activities are available for pick-up on Wednesdays and will keep your child's mind active and creative! Craft offerings include build a birdhouse kit, ceramic bird ornaments, confetti bowl kit, fall wind chimes, science at home, sun catcher, wooden treasure box and ceramic leaf bowls. Check the website often as more take-home activities will be added throughout the year.
Are you getting SLP communication the way you prefer?
To ensure you are getting SLP communication the way you prefer, please take a few minutes to review and update the following information in Campus Parent Portal:
- Primary phone number
- Emergency contact and phone number
- Email address
- Parent and guardian changes and updates
- Adding/removing household members
- Primary address changes
Why is it important to update this information? How does SLP use this information?
Current, updated information in Campus Parent Portal is used in the following ways:
- Automated phone calls for general school announcements, emergencies or weather-related school closings
- Mailed school and district communication
- Email communication from teachers, your school's newsletter and district news
- If your student(s) school needs to get ahold of you in regards to attendance, a sick child, etc.
In case you missed important information from last week's newsletter, check out the topics below and click to learn more:
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