September 25, 2014

As we approach the start of the annual Student Hunger Drive in the Quad Cities, the classical historian in me once again rises to harken the advice of the ancients. While the Greek Philosopher Heraclitus' work on Flux and the Unity of Opposites can sometimes be a little daunting, he did pen one of my favorite phrases regarding Character and Integrity. "Good Character is not formed in a week or a month. It is created little by little, day by day." 

While we can all point to examples of good or bad Character, especially amidst our social media rich society today, it can be a difficult concept to actually define. Webster defines Character as "the complex of mental and ethical traits marking and often individualizing a person, group, or nation" or a person of "moral excellence and firmness." Interesting, but not really helpful from a practical, teaching standpoint. 

A better solution might be to dissect the attributes of good Character; such as integrity, truthfulness, service to essence a constant moral compass to live one's life by. If this is indeed true, then Heraclitus' had it right all along. Character and Integrity is a learned and consistently practiced concept. We learn through study, from others as role models as well as through self-discovery and reflection. Children model behavior of those surrounding them, so in regard to teaching our children the principles of Character, it truly is the case of the old African proverb that "It takes a village to raise a child." Parents, teachers, peers, friends, etc. all have an impact in establishing and defining a sense of Character within a child.

The entire Rivermont community, faculty, and parents stand united in our efforts to instill within our students the values of integrity, truthfulness and service. Kicking off this week we have the unique opportunity to once again demonstrate to our children the values of service before self through the annual Quad Cities Student Hunger Drive. This wonderful opportunity to help struggling members of our community is an excellent example of how we all as a "Village" can continue to instill the values of Character and Integrity into the next generation. 

You will be hearing more on the Hunger Drive over the next few weeks. Let's strive to make this year's campaign a success by not just in helping our fellow man, but in reaffirming the nature and importance of Character to our children.

NOTE: As a safety reminder, we need your help in ensuring that all children are wearing a seat buckle whenever they are riding in a car.  We are noticing a number of children at drop-off and afternoon pick-up riding unbuckled or even standing up inside the vehicle waving their hand outside the sunroof.  This is both incredibly unsafe and presents a poor example to the other children who are watching.   Please help us ensure all our students arrive and leave school safely.  

Have a wonderful and safe weekend. 

Todd Zachary


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