What I Wish I Knew as a Middle School Parent

November 10, 2016

Dear Families,

By now you know that my parenting journey contains all sorts of opportunity for growth as a person and as a parent. I wish that I could say that every decision I made resulted in a harmonious outcome.  Oh, how I wish that. My heart’s desire is to share my lessons with you in hopes that they offer encouragement, wisdom, and freedom.

I started and restarted this week’s Wire twenty-seven times. That is not a typo. I actually typed out the number to prove intentionality. My topics spanned several unconnected themes. This morning, I resolved that the message of this week needed to focus on two things. First, I believe it needed to focus on what I call my wish list. Second, it needed to focus on my gratitude.

What I wish I knew as a new middle school parent…

  • They really will make it.
  • They can be trusted with a lot.
  • They want to try on their own.
  • *They want to know it’s ok to struggle. In fact, it is developmentally appropriate for them to make mistakes that put you in knots at times. Seriously!
  • *Middle school can be the safest place to struggle.

  • They want responsibility.
  • They want to be empowered.
  • *The best thing I can do for my child is let them struggle to become a butterfly.

Over the three day weekend, I encourage you to take a walk with your child. Have a candid conversation with your child. Start by telling them something you wish for in life. Share something completely unrelated to them. Allow the conversation to evolve. When you believe they will share their personal wishes, ask them.

In this season of thanks, I want to share my heart of thanks with you. I am thankful that each day that I walk the halls, I see evidence of growth. I am thankful that I have the opportunity to pour into every middle school student. I am thankful for a staff that wants what is best for their students and is willing to grow as teachers. I am thankful for the opportunity to invest in the vision and mission of our school. I am thankful for a job that allows me to invest in our future. I am thankful for a job that holds me accountable to walk in integrity and grow my character.

I challenge you as a family to share your thoughts of thanks.

Honored to Serve You All,

Janet Worley

Food for Thought: Ready for another controversial read? Here you go! Safe-ish on the Interweb. I share this read with you because, my dear friend, a Douglas County detective is currently working 5 separate cases involving the disappearance of teens due to online interactions. You may not want to micromanage your children. You may want to honor their privacy. I get it! This article highlights some great points. I shared it and discussed it with my two darlings a few years back. I encourage you to read it with yours as well.

Good Reads: Yardsticks by Chip Wood. Ever wonder why middle school hallways lack a certain serenity? Ever had your young teen say, “I just wanted to see what would happen.”? This book explores the developmental progression of our youth. It will offer enlightenment and, my hope is, encouragement.

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