Administrator’s Corner: Connecting generations together is crucial

Published 8:00 pm Friday, November 17, 2023

Administrator’s Corner by Kim Larson

It’s truly commendable that the schools in Albert Lea took the initiative to host veterans appreciation programs, creating a platform for different generations to come together and understand each other better. Building a bridge between generations is crucial for fostering mutual respect, understanding and appreciation.

Kim Larson, interim principal at Halverson Elementary School.

Events like these not only honor the sacrifices of veterans but also provide an opportunity for students and staff to connect with them on a personal level. Learning about the significance of each fold in the flag during the ceremony adds a layer of education and appreciation for the symbolic aspects of patriotism.

Email newsletter signup

By involving the Post 56 Honor Guard, the program not only paid tribute to the veterans but also showcased a collaborative effort between the school, the community and those who have served the nation. The act of singing “The Star Spangled Banner” together reinforces a sense of unity and shared identity.

Beyond the immediate impact on the participants, events like the veterans appreciation program contribute to a broader cultural understanding and respect for the sacrifices made by veterans to protect the freedoms enjoyed by all. This kind of initiative helps to bridge the generation gap by providing a shared experience that brings different age groups together in a meaningful way.

It’s important to continue organizing such events to promote empathy, understanding and a sense of community, ensuring that the appreciation for veterans and their contributions remains ingrained in the collective consciousness of the school, its students and the broader community.

At Halverson:

Kindergarten and first-grade recited the Pledge of Allegiance. Social studies standards address civic values and democracy. In kindergarten, students learn to describe symbols, songs and traditions that identify our nation and state; while in first grade, students should be able to explain why and when the Pledge of Allegiance is recited, as well as provide examples of basic flag etiquette and other demonstrations of patriotism.

Second graders sang “Grand Old Flag.” All grade levels have music performance standards. Second graders perform music with and for others, using technical accuracy and expression.

Third graders wrote and recited a Veterans Day acrostic poem.
Third graders used their listening, speaking, viewing and exchanging ideas standard as they used vocabulary for effect and attended to features of spoken language in communicating with others in social and academic situations (including volume, intonation, phrasing,speed, pausing, stress, rhythm and gestures).

Fourth grade recited a poem, “Veterans Day” by Jessica Hawkins. Within the Reading Foundations of fourth grade English language arts standards is students reading grade-level texts fluently, with sufficient accuracy, rate and expression to support comprehension.

Select fifth-grade students shared their essays titled, “What Veterans Day Means to Me?” Social studies standards address History – Peoples, Cultures and Changes Over Time. Students learn that historical events have multiple causes and can lead to varied and unintended outcomes. Students in fifth grade have also been writing routinely for various purposes and disciplines, representing one’s own personal perspective, identity and voice. They have demonstrated the ability to develop and strengthen their writing by using the writing process including planning, drafting, revising, editing and publishing.

Kim Larson is principal of Halverson Elementary School.