Leaders come in all shapes and sizes. And this week, I have made sure that I spoke with our new leaders at Joyner. Fifth graders walk around with such confidence. This is home and I saw it on that first night of Meet the Teacher as they moved around the building so happy to be back. The students explored all their favorite corners, visited with their past teachers and generally connected with each other. What a fabulous feeling to be at the top!

But what I have stressed to these bright new leaders in my introduction to them was that it is in their actions that I want see their thoughtful leadership. I encouraged them to be the role models. Not just doing the right thing walking in the hallways, but doing those little things that show how we are a family at Joyner. Hold the door open. Help a student in need when they drop something. Just being willing to offer help to those around them.

The fifth grade students have just risen and responded. I am so proud of those little things they have done. I watched as someone found a lost lunch box and did not just ignore it but helped find its home. These leaders greet others with happy smiles and encouragement. I am so proud.

But I also want to point out the leadership I find in so many classrooms beyond just fifth grade. Doing the right thing, our students are leading in learning. Their questions are smart. The products of their writing are reflective. Reading the fourth graders work this week as they found those “key” moments in life was amazing. I encourage all students to continue in their inquiry at school and at home.

This week has been a fabulous start to our year. I am proud of all of our leaders and learners.