One of the greatest gifts of our lives is belonging to a community… contributing to something greater than ourselves. I am inspired by the words of Robert Finch,
“True belonging is born of relationships not only to one another but to a place of shared responsibilities and benefits. We love not so much what we have acquired as what we have made and whom we have made it with.” —Robert Finch
Our children are doing the hard work of learning to live in, cultivate and stand for community in our classrooms everyday. The grace and courtesy curriculum demands that each child learn to stand up and speak up for himself and others, learn to truly listen and offer compassion and patience, and develop conflict resolution and community building skills – even from the earliest age.
Somehow they understand that they must contribute to the good of the whole to truly belong, and we see this in their daily work as they wash the windows, rake up leaves, read with younger students, give lessons to each other – and even set up small fundraisers around campus. It is part of what makes a Greenspring Montessori education such incredible preparation for the real world. Our students learn early that truly belonging to a community means contributing to the community.
And as a community of adults – both staff and parents, we seek to serve as role models for our children. So we, too, must come together to do the hard work of living in, cultivating and standing for community. Speaking to each other rather than about each other. Offering compassion, patience and strong listening skills. Embracing each other’s humanity – with all our understanding and consideration. For it is through our example that our children can truly become the ambassadors and leaders of our world that we so desperately need.
And for us to have that deep sense of belonging to a community, we also must contribute. Some contribute time, supporting the dozens of events and activities throughout the year that so serve as the foundation of our community.
Others generously contribute talents, sharing expertise and making the school community stronger and richer. You enhance our curriculum and technology, our knowledge of how to do better by our children, and our ability to serve the greater Baltimore community.
And others share their treasure; allowing us to build our programs, support our professional development and so much more.
There are a number of opportunities for you to be a part of this community by sharing your time, talents and treasure – and you should know about two special people who can help you along the way:
- You can contact Beth Callahan, who has just this year taken on the role of Volunteer Coordinator, through this form – and let her know how you can help us, or learn more about the places where we need help.
- The Chair of our Development Committee, who is herself a volunteer, is parent Lori Baylin. Lori has two children that attend Greenspring Montessori School, and is a strong advocate for making sure we have everything we need to truly serve our students. Lori will be working to include everyone in our Annual Giving this year – know that you’ll hear more from her in the coming weeks. You can also always learn about giving here, on our website.
It was so wonderful to meet with so many of you the other night. We are strengthening the foundation of this learning community and getting to know each other, our partners in raising up these extraordinary children into extraordinary adults. We look forward to continuing our partnership with you in making this school better every day than it was the last!