Thriving at school and home

Faculty and staff kicked off 2023 with a high-energy workshop lead by best-selling author Michele Borba, Ed.D.
Thanks to the incredible support of the Parents’ Club, the highly anticipated event was part of a faculty-wide, year-long study of Dr. Borba’s international best-selling book Thrivers, a research-based guide outlining teachable strengths that develop happy, healthy, high-performing kids. The faculty has been using the book as a guidepost for enhancing the incredible student experience at Alcuin.
Parents attended a presentation later that evening on how to replicate Dr. Borba’s lessons in the home.
In Thrivers, Dr. Borba proposes cultivating seven essential character traits to help children fulfill their academic and personal potential: self-respect, empathy, integrity, self-control, curiosity, perseverance, and optimism. Many of these traits, she noted, are already deeply imbedded in the academic curriculum at Alcuin.
“The first thing you do to foster a certain trait is to recognize the importance of it,” Dr. Borba said. “Traits like curiosity and empathy are part and parcel of what are now known as future-proofing skills that every kid needs.”
Recognizing Alcuin teachers for the work being done to encourage students as young as 18 months old to move outside their comfort zone, Dr. Borba said it was equally important that teachers creatively develop ways for students to manage their stress and anxiety levels.
After each presentation, Dr. Borba continued the conversation with teachers and parents, meeting them individually, answering their questions, posing for photos and signing copies of her book.
“To have somebody come in from the outside with her level of expertise but who isn’t an expert in Montessori, it was so affirming for the faculty, especially after the stress of the last few years,” said Peggy Larson, Associate Head of School for Early Childhood. “To have somebody come in and remind us that we’re doing it the right way means a lot; that kids are resilient, and we just need to keep doing what we’re doing because it’s the right thing to do.”