Estabrook Buzz

November 26, 2018

Upcoming Dates

Tuesday, November 27

  • School Picture Retakes
  • 6:00 pm Lexington School Committee annual meeting in Boston

Week of December 3 - Estabrook Book Fair

  • Monday, December 3 .......................... 11am – 4pm
  • Tuesday, December 4 .......................... 8:30am – 4pm
  • Wednesday, December 5 ......................8:30am – 4pm and 5:30pm-7:30pm
  • Thursday, December 6.. ........................8:30am – 1pm
  • Friday, December 7 ............................. 8:30am-11am and 3pm-4pm
  • Sunday, December 9............................. 2pm-4pm (Holiday Marketplace)

Sunday, December 9

  • 2:00-4:00 . Holiday Marketplace & Game Night

Thursday, December 13

  • 6:30-7:30 pm Science Fair Kick-off; Evening of Inspiration
  • Guest Speaker: Celis Brisbin, Director of Operations for the U.S. Green Building Council, Massachusetts

Principal's Corner: Beyond Grit

Angela Duckworth “literally wrote the book on grit.” Her 2013 Ted Talk Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance has over 15.5 million views and was followed by her 2016 book by the same name, which became a New York Time best seller. Duckworth is a professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, a former MacArthur fellow, and founder of the Character Lab.

So it was with interest that I read a recent interview with Duckworth in the journal Educational Leadership in which she comments on how her work on grit has sometimes been over-simplified or misunderstood. In describing the broader scope of her work, Duckworth uses the term “character,” but notes that many would name it “social emotional learning.”

In the interview, Duckworth describes three “families of character strengths.” These are:

  • Strengths of Heart (interpersonal character strengths), such as gratitude, empathy, honesty and social emotional intelligence.
  • Strengths of Will (intrapersonal character strengths), including self-control, delay of gratification, grit, optimism and growth mindset.
  • Strengths of Mind (intellectual character strengths): such as curiosity, open-mindedness, intellectual humility, imagination and creativity.

Duckworth notes that grit is not about “forcing kids to do tons of practice on hard things they don’t care about.” She suggests we need to find ways for kids to be playful and enjoy things. She cautions that grit should not overshadow other character strengths, noting that “being a ‘good’ person is more important than being ‘great’ at something.”

I have long been interested in how schools and families can teach and promote what are sometimes referred to as “habits of mind.” In their leading-edge work in this area, Art Costa and Bena Kallick identify 16 habits of mind. Their list of habits is similar to Duckworth’s, however, what sets Duckworth’s thinking apart for me is the way she has organized her list around the concepts of heart, mind, and will.

A serendipitous aside: Lexington Superintendent Julie Hackett’s Twitter page (@lexingtonsuper) features a slogan she developed following her opening remarks to staff this year that echoes this thinking about schools: “For every child, a hungry mind and a joyful heart.”

Heart, mind and will. I’d say that about covers what the focus of our work in schools should be. What are your thoughts?

Rick Rogers

Interim Principal

Big picture

Reminders from Crossing Guard Tricia Jenness

  1. As you exit the driveway onto Grove Street, stay in your lane. We’ve had some near collisions.
  2. Do not hover around or near the yellow-stiped area at the end of the driveway. Look before you turn into the driveway. If the line is full, please drive by the entrance and turn on Royal Circle or Eldred St.
  3. SLOW DOWN! All staff on duty have noted instances of cars driving too fast in the driveway. Don’t let the rush to get to work or after school activities lead to an accident. Drive with caution.

Passport Night Is Coming: January 17th - 6:00-8:00 pm

Passport Night is an event that celebrates the varied cultures and traditions that make up our wonderful Estabrook community. It is a loved tradition that allows our families to learn more about our cultures.

What's running when?

  • Cultural Activity Center: 6:00-8:00
  • Potluck: 6:00-6:45
  • International Tables: 6:45-8:00

Sign-up to host a table, here:

Table setup is from 5:30-6:00. Bring your supplies to Estabrook school, check-in at the front tables in the lobby and get your project space assignment.

  • Drop your potluck dish off in the cafeteria no later than 6:00.
  • Visit the new cultural activity center in the gym any time between 6:00-8:00pm.
  • Join us for a community dinner at 6pm in the cafeteria before taking an international tour through the project spaces from 6:45-8pm.

Potluck Dishes

Choose a dish that you love to make for your family and friends that you feel represents your culture. For this community event, please make a dish that can feed 18-22 people. If needed for your dish, please bring serving utensils. If it is a reusable dish, please remember to pick it up by the end of the night.

Children Must Be Accompanied by an Adult
This is a family event, so all children must be accompanied by an adult at all times. If your family is hosting a table and your child plans on circulating, please make arrangements for your child to be accompanied by another adult.

Email Lori Alberts ( with further questions.

Scenes from November All School Meeting

Let's Connect: First Grade Parent Workshop

Safe Routes to School Day