A Note From Noah

Being a part of your nursery school community is truly a privilege that I treasure. As the year winds down, being a part of your community fills me with awe, gratitude, and joy. Awe for the capacity of your children to impress and surprise us with their strengths and creativity; gratitude for the teachers, parents, caregivers, and support staff who commit themselves to building our community; and joy for the giggles, shrieks, belly-laughs, and smiles we have had with your children in our classrooms and Common Space since September.  Above all else, my awe, gratitude, and joy is for the love, hope, and friendships that your children have experienced this year.

Nursery school is a place where children learn to make relationships.  You might hear many (many!) other reasons children attend preschool – increased independence, kindergarten readiness, 21st century skills, etc – but none are as important as learning to build relationships. Sharing, taking turns, asking questions, being part of a conversation. Feeling loved and giving love, trusting (and challenging) new grown-ups, learning where boundaries are. Connecting to different people in the community, empathizing with new perspectives, feeling responsible for the welfare of others. Knowing that your actions matter to others.

My first Note of the year was about relationships, relationships which at our school revolve around the capacity to Love and Hope. I framed this for you at Parent Orientation on September 12:

I want to boil down the year to come into two crucial tenets: Love and Hope. These are not platitudes for us in the nursery school community; they are the backbone of what we work so hard to build. By Love I mean the development of meaningful, trusting relationships built off of the capacity to see the godliness in the other, the recognition that each individual is a holy and special person, to be treated with care and respect. And by Hope I mean the nurturing of the belief that the world can, and will, be a better place, due to our active, communal efforts towards social justice and social responsibility.   You will hear your teachers refers to this throughout the year as Tikkun Olam, Hebrew for “repairing the world.” 

It is my hope that you have found those elements very present in our school community this year, and that your child has taken these qualities as part of him/herself. Being present with other people, and filling that presence with positivity, is really what it all comes down to for us. Your child’s capacity to build positive relationships, using the skills listed above, is why they were here in school all year, and it is what they will take with them as they move on to the summer and perhaps a new school next year.

Your children are not leaving anything behind. They are, in fact, taking it all with them. They are taking Love and Hope with them as they embark on a new chapter of their journey. I can’t wait to see where they place their Love and Hope, and the beautiful things they will create with them, in the months and years to come.

Shabbat shalom,

Post-script: For a focus on end-of-year transitions, see my concluding Note from last year

Returning families: I would like to invite you into my office for a half hour conversation at some point this summer to get your feedback on how this year was for you and any questions about next year. I find these conversations to be immensely helpful in my ongoing goal to strengthen our school community and ensure that your child and family’s needs and thoughts are considered and appreciated.