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072 – How to handle being overwhelmed with a new school year starting

In this episode, Adam Salgat and Mike Desparrois discuss the nervousness and the feelings we have about our kids heading into two new realms of education. They also talk about acceptance versus agreement and how that applies to working with teachers in this busy time of year. Listen closely as they give examples of what they’re going through and how they feel overwhelmed by everything. Then think about the things that you do when you feel overwhelmed and how you deal with all of those emotions.

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Introduction 0:07
Welcome to the listen first podcast brought to you by the Chapman foundation for caring communities. Our vision and mission is to strengthen relationships and build stronger communities through listening, leadership, care and service to create a truly human connection. Learn and partner with us as we imagine a society in which people care about each other. And listen first.

Adam Salgat 0:38
Welcome to the listen first podcast. I’m your host, Adam Salgat. As our community listens transitions into the champion foundation for caring communities. This podcast will continue to be a tool to refresh the teachings of the communication skills course. It will also allow us to learn more about the people inside the organization and the businesses we partner with. On today’s episode, Mike, this bears joins me as we discussed the nervousness and the feelings we have of our kids heading into two different realms of education. We also talked about acceptance versus agreement and how that applies to working with teachers and this busy time of year. Listen closely as we give examples of what we’re going through and how we feel overwhelmed by everything going on. Think about the things that you do when you feel overwhelmed, and how you deal with all of those emotions. Mike, welcome back to the podcast How you been?

Unknown Speaker 1:34
Good, Adam, how you been?

Adam Salgat 1:36
I’ve been very good. I had a good weekend with my wife, I had a little opportunity to spend some time with just the two of us reconnect. It’s it’s always, you know, awesome when you get that opportunity. And then you look at the people in your life. And you’re very grateful for those that step up to make that happen. So my sister who watched the girls for the weekend, very great grateful for someone like that in my life.

Speaker 3 1:57
Yeah, it’s always nice when you get an opportunity to hang out with your wife reconnect, push the kids to the side, even though they’re an important part of our lives. But sometimes we need to just re energize our batteries, right?

Adam Salgat 2:08
Yep, absolutely. And today’s topic is about you know, we’re going to talk about kids and we’re going to talk about, you know, changes coming for both of our kids. And the time of year is school is starting back up. We’re in mid August right now. I know for you, your your one daughter has already started high school back up. My My wife is a teacher and she’s on her way back next week to do No, I take that back. She’s on her way back this week to do professional development, and everything. And then my five year old starts kindergarten next week. So we’ll we’ll chat on that. But before we get there, just a general kind of when you think about back to school, and when you were a kid, you know what got you excited about heading back to school. What was it?

Speaker 3 2:52
Well, there was a lot of stuff about going back to school that made me nervous. Always like the struggle of school, because school is never easy. But I’ll tell you that my favorite Back to School activity, was just going to get school supplies with my mom. So and here’s why I’m the youngest of four. I have an older sister, two older brothers, which met at like growing up in the 70s and 80s. Everything was a hand me down. school supplies were my own. And I never had any down school supplies. And my mom would take each of us separately. And I just remember how awesome it would be to like convince her to get the big box of crayons, you know, like the 64 box of Crayolas and have a little pencil or a little crayon sharpener in there. Yeah, and you just had all your new materials and it just smelt so good. And it was just so much fun. Thinking like, Wow, all this stuff is mine. And it’s new. And you know, you go to school with your like brand new lunchbox and your, your backpack and all your stuff ready to roll. How about you and what was your favorite memory of going back to school? What got you excited,

Adam Salgat 3:56
I have similar feelings when it comes to the the freshness or the you know, the fresh feeling of new supplies or a new backpack or just even new clothes a little bit. I was never much of a fashion guy. But just the idea of having new items was always kind of cool. But one of the things when I was younger, more adolescent like 15 and younger, was seeing friends again, and seeing them consistently again, because I grew up in the country. So my closest friend was like four miles away, which is not that far. But that always and that always entailed, you know, getting parents to take you there like they weren’t too comfortable of us riding our bikes that far at the age of 11. And on country roads and you know, there’s not much not much space for you in a car going 60 miles an hour. So it was that opportunity to get back. See some friends who I hadn’t seen in a you know, a number of weeks, potentially and just kind of get back into it. That was always the fun thing. And then I will say also what always comes with the start of school for me and especially in these parts is Started football season. So as a big sports guy, and I know you are to start a football in the fall is always very nostalgic and happy memories.

Speaker 3 5:11
Yeah, out here in West Texas football is you know, it’s King. So it’s it’s exciting to have a year to hear like about all the sports going on and kids going back to school and firing up. And, you know, one of the things that I always remember too, is growing up really close to my high school. I mean, I grew up like a block away. Oh, really was? Yeah, about like, mid July ish, you would hear the band practicing. You know, it was like that meant like things were getting exciting for football. And, you know, everything else like school is coming back, although you have the dread, like, well, school is coming back to go to school and do work. It’s like you said, it’s the newness, it’s the excitement. And I think just the opportunity to see friends. You know, like sometimes change schools and go to new places. It’s always exciting as well. But I also think like, we have to identify that there’s so many different feelings that people are going through when back to school starts, right. So I know your wife’s a teacher. And I know you have your oldest is like ready to head off to kindergarten for the first time. Have y’all done the school shots, the school supply shopping yet.

Adam Salgat 6:16
That is one of the little stressors that’s still on us. We are making a plan for my wife. Because you know, with two other kids involved, it’s not easy for even the five of us to go do something that really needs like some good focus and good attention to easily because especially now Our youngest is almost one so she doesn’t want to be in her car seat very long. She doesn’t want to be in the cart. She wants to get out and roam around. So we are working on a plan this weekend to have Becky take Avery our oldest shopping and just the two of them. So they can focus on it. Get what she needs when it comes to supplies, and then also get some new new school clothes. She just she’s growing so fast. It’s like, you know, she put pajamas on last night and they look like kulacz. Like they’re halfway up your shins. And we’re like, Well, you know, it’s summertime. She’s fine. She’s not gonna. But yeah, it’s definitely the feelings about all of it. And the our youngest getting ready to start kindergarten is in some ways, it’s almost mind blowing. Because I I didn’t grow up dreaming of having many kids, if any kids I didn’t know what I wanted. Exactly. So I didn’t think about it till my 20s. And then once I finally did, now getting to live things like yesterday, she rode her bike for the first time without training wheels, Oh, wow. Next week, she starts kindergarten. And all these little milestones that keep happening are stressful, because I don’t want her to fall and get hurt on her bike. I don’t want her to you know, get too scared about school. But at the same time, they’re they’re very exciting. And I know that we have prepared her pretty well to be ready for kindergarten not just educationally but socially. So while we’re worried about all of these things, you know, these little things of how is she going to do? How is she going to fit in all that? We know that in the end, it’ll be okay.

Speaker 3 8:09
So how does she feel out? I mean, you told me about your feelings and your license, how is your daughter feeling about getting ready to go to kindergarten,

Adam Salgat 8:18
I think it’s going to be very similar to when she started preschool because she is going to be excited overall, but worried and scared within those first few days. Because I dropped her off her first day of preschool. And we have been talking about it and practicing and you know, you know backpack and being prepared and all these things, the things that kids kind of get excited about, like, I get that new backpack, right? I get to do this now. But that first day of preschool dropping her off, was like, I was leaving her forever. You know what I mean? Like they it was almost like prying her out of my arms. But by day three, or the next week, really. She was more or less like just walking in and getting pretty comfortable. And is because I know, she kept expressing an interest to want to do it. But at the same time was scared. So she’s done the same thing here with kindergarten, she’s expressed an interest in it being exciting. She wants to go into kindergarten, she wants to do it. But I also know she has especially shared with my wife a little bit more her worry about going somewhere new not having any of the kids that she had in her preschool class because oddly enough, none of them happen to be going to elementary that she’s going to go to Yeah. And so she’s worried she’s a little afraid. But I know she’s excited because she likes to learn. She likes to be challenged. And I know she wants wants those things. It’s just finding finding it or I guess, just getting over the scare of it.

Speaker 3 9:52
Yeah, you know, it’s, it sounds like y’all are doing a great job as parents too. Because one things we got to recognize and you know, we learned this in class. asses our feelings and our emotions, when we go through the feelings and emotions we’ll, and they just are in all those feelings and emotions are acceptable, you know, and I grew up in the generation where we kind of suppressed feelings. And we were kind of told to suppress feelings a little bit, like, Oh, you shouldn’t worry, or don’t worry, be happy, or you shouldn’t be sad or nervous about going to school be fine, and that type of stuff. And you know, it’s really important, just like you were talking about with your daughter that she’s excited, she’s a little nervous, she’s gonna be a little scared. You know, just like in pre K, when you dropped her off for the first time, she wanted to hold on to you. And, you know, go into a new school with a new setting and new people, there’s a lot of emotion she’s swimming through just like y’all are. And one of the very best things we could do. And in social, emotional learning, we talked about this is self management. And self management is a really important tool that kids get from the Enroll model by the adults. And so it sounds like you and Becky got a great, great handle on just talking about, yeah, I’m a little nervous, too. You know, it’s gonna be hard, it’s gonna be weird, you go into school, but I think we’ll be okay. And as soon as kids start hearing us talk about our emotions and our feelings, they start to realize that it’s okay to have those. And that’s really about working through those emotions and feelings. So we can have a really, really productive behavior, as opposed to a non productive behavior. Because the last thing you want is your daughter to wake up for kindergarten, just like refuse to go, right? Or like for parents to be like, Oh, I’m scared to death, I don’t want my kid to go, we have to work through all this stuff. And it’s kind of like our onion slide that we teach in the OCL class, that it’s about choice in, the more we’re building on those choices and understanding through those choices with our kids and ourselves, we become way more resilient. And resiliency is a really key thing. Right? So, because kindergarten the first time she’s gonna leave, right, and you’re gonna let her go, you know, she can make good hands. But there’s gonna be other major events in her life that this is just kind of one of those starting pieces to continue to go as well, not just for her, but for you and your wife, if a little other little ones at home, too, right?

Adam Salgat 12:03
Yeah, absolutely. Well, our second one is potentially starting preschool. And we were just as worried about some of the things happening with her. She’s almost three years old in October, but you know, we’re worried about how she’s going to handle it right now. She doesn’t seem to take direction real well, she’s very independent. She’s, she’s pretty, you know, she doesn’t sit for story. I can’t imagine her right now setting very good for storytime. But we know she’s pretty young. But you said something in there, you said a couple of things in there that I want to touch on real quick. One of them being that we’re good parents, well, thank you for that. But I will say like everyone else, I still sometimes write things off maybe a little too quickly with the statements of, Oh, it’ll be okay. Or you’re going to be fine. I mean, I try to catch myself in those spots to, to open up or to let them open up a little bit more, as opposed to just say those and keep going. But there are definitely times where that’s just what is said. And I think a lot of times we get stuck in these like, well, that’s what people say. And that’s just what people say. So we kind of get lost in and how that doesn’t necessarily reflect or accept what they’re going through. And then the second thing you mentioned in there was choice. And that’s something that I do talk to our five year old about a lot when it comes to how you’re going to handle the fact that your little sister just took your toy? Or how are you going to handle the fact that I said, No, we cannot go in the pool until later today. So I talked to a lot about choice of like, how to handle those, those issues, or how to handle those answers or responses. And just simply say you have a choice, you can sit here and pout and be upset, or you can choose to accept it and we can have fun doing other things. And I honestly don’t know if I’m talking a little bit over her head sometimes she’s almost six, you know, so. But she’s pretty. She’s always seemingly been pretty adept at reading those kinds of feelings and understanding. So sometimes I’m like, am I putting way too much on here at the age of six? Or am I doing the right thing? I don’t know. But

Speaker 3 14:12
I would say you’re doing the right thing. And you know what, what’s really important is, in the SEL world, the social emotional learning world, we talk about self management. And there’s another side called self awareness. And self awareness is all about when we make mistakes, right? And when we have to go back and kind of fix those. And so you’re very aware of when you say, Oh, it’ll be fine. It’s okay. And then you go back and try to fix those things. And that’s, that’s one of the most important things as adults, as teachers, as parents, as role models that we can do with kids, because you’re also showing them, it’s okay to make mistakes. It’s more about fixing those mistakes and going through the process and learning from them. Because people are just not perfect, right? We’re very, we’re very prone to error, but it’s how we kind of Build and learn through those things. It’s, I’d say, Yeah, I think your daughter’s probably got a pretty good handle on the choices and the things that she’s learning and the things that she’s able to do. And that’s great, because you know, there’s parents out there that don’t let their kids make any choices. And that can be a really dangerous thing. Because the very basics of problem solving is letting kids make the most basic choices, right? Like, you want to wear your pink shoes or your blue shoes today, right. And when we get kids to problem solve, even at the most basic level, we see a dramatic decrease of nonproductive behaviors later in life, because they’re not manipulating situations, they can actually problem solve on their own, like, Oh, my pencil broke, well, I can go sharpen my pencil, I can get another pencil out of the box, rather than push their teachers or whoever else to kind of problem solve. So kudos to you. It’s okay that you made mistakes we all do. It’s about applying and living in the moment, the very best we can, right. And sometimes, like, we’re just as stressed as our kiddo. It will say those things to try to make them feel better. But in the long run, you know, it’s one of those things where we go through life, as as groups as people in it’s how we support and help each other out, even when we’re not our best.

Adam Salgat 16:12
Right. So Mike, I know we’ve talked about my five year old starting kindergarten. Well, your your oldest is also starting a pretty big chapter in her life. Yeah, I’m a place I’ll hopefully be in 15 plus years or so. Or, well, roughly 15 years, she’s stepping into college. Tell me a little bit about your feelings of your daughter going away to school going away to college.

Speaker 3 16:35
Wow, everything you said right. And you know, it’s interesting because Avery Kate’s about to go to Austin, Texas, and she’s gonna go to University of Texas, it’s about five hour drive for us, you know, you can take a plane and everything. So all the feelings and everything that you said about your daughter go into kindergarten totally can relate to those. I remember taking Avery Kate to kindergarten with my wife, you know, we’re educators, we understand the importance of independence. And she’s a very, very independent kid. And I remember just walking up to the door and like just almost a deer in the headlights scared, right. And like she had a preschool great. And we’re just walking in and she just walks right into the door and give us her teacher a big hug. Because they met the day before, you know, like I’m Parent Teacher Day, and just sat down and she was like, good, y’all can leave. Like waiters that get to hang out with you all day long, which isn’t the case, no teacher wants all the parents out of there as quick as possible. And it’s funny because my wife and I have been talking about that’s what dropping her off in the dorm on Saturdays probably going to be like, like, we’ll move our stuff in, maybe get a little setup. But they have this big thing where like, they keep their dorms that rooms open, and kids meet and greet each other. And every kid’s gonna be like, okay, I’m good. Yeah. And that’s the point where we just have to let her be good. But we’ve had all those emotions and those feelings all summer long. You know, even with her it’s been a roller coaster. I like really excited to stressed out, do I have all my stuff to how do I register for classes? How do I live on my own? Let’s talk about laundry. I don’t like the food at that. I mean, anything and everything is kind of in there. And then friends leaving or going to different colleges. So yeah, we have a lot of conversations about feelings. And how you know, it’s okay. Yeah, I understand that you’re nervous. I’m a little nervous too. And we just kind of like support each other through it. And it’s really interesting, because when I find myself not given her the time or the attention, if I’m really busy. That’s when she stressed us out even more. So that, you know, the reflective listening to empathic, empathic listening that we talked about was so important at this time. And I’ll tell you this out of one of my favorite things, still, to this day with my kiddos, is to say, How was school like when everything’s kind of settled down, and you’re eating dinner, or just everyone’s kind of hanging out on the couch? Avery, Kate, she would tell me the whole story. Right? From the moment she left the moment she got home. And my youngest daughter who’s more of a introvert would be like, it’s good. But what’s awesome is even with her, they tell you these little nuggets, if you’re really tuned in, and those nuggets are sometimes the best stories of their life, whether they talk about a teacher or something else. So yeah, the best advice I could give you is just tune in at those moments. Because sometimes you hear something about another kid or another teacher or what they’re learning, and it’s just like they’re lighten up because they’re so excited about like their independent life in a way.

Adam Salgat 19:36
That sounds awesome. And I will keep that in mind. And I kind of get what you mean when you kind of ask about school and they give you a little bit but they don’t give you everything and I’m just getting into that now, even more so because with her going five full days. It’s going to be quite different for her. The piece in here that you mentioned, or a question that I had that you kind of touched on, but maybe Let’s expand it just a little bit was, how do we work through being overwhelmed? You mentioned just listening and talking. Is there anything else you want to add to that the idea of how to work through being overwhelmed, whether it’s as yourself, the parent or with your kid? And I know eventually we’re going to talk about teachers. So maybe we come back to that, but but let’s just talk parents and kids right now.

Speaker 3 20:21
Yeah, absolutely. I think that the biggest thing for us to understand is that being overwhelmed is very much a it’s a human condition, if you will, right. There’s points in times in our life, when we just feel like there’s so much on our shoulder, there’s so much burden, that we have to really realize that we don’t have to always carry all that. So self care is important, right, like taking good care of ourselves, making sure we’re exercising, doing breathing techniques, all that stuff’s important. But really, what can help out quite a bit is just conversations about how you feel, that can also help out your kids as well, too. Because in most cases, like, if you’re a little overwhelmed with her starting school, you know, she’s a little overwhelmed of starting school. So again, it’s a great opportunity to talk about that, just say, hey, you know, I feel feel a little overwhelmed. And this is what overwhelmed means, like, I have a lot going on it, just express that. And let her just kind of reciprocate and talk through that as well. Because you know, what it’s like when you have a lot happening, and you’re just able to talk to someone and someone listens, it’s like, you automatically feel a little better. Not that all those burdens go away. But it’s amazing how just feels a little bit better. And it also is going to teach her how to be vulnerable, right. And when we’re vulnerable, we find out that other people are going through a lot of the same things that we are, we’re not carrying the weight of the world by ourselves. So I think that that’s a really powerful topic and something to think about. And I oftentimes see parents and teachers dismiss that with our kiddos, like, don’t worry about it, that type of stuff, right. And when we sense it, we have to just kind of go with it. And when we ourselves sense that we’re overwhelmed, we have to kind of understand that sometimes like that choice level is critically important at that point in time. So sit in that choice, think about how we can have better productive behaviors, and not non productive behaviors that our kiddos are going to be the recipients of, because we’re always modeling those situations. And if we are stressed, and it is a non productive behavior, and it’s just like you said earlier, Adam, we go back and we fix it, right? We say hey, here’s where I went wrong.

Adam Salgat 22:24
Yep, we do our best to self correct. And if we need to, you know, we we point that out to the person that that might have happened with or, or we just try to move on and do better without even needing to bring that up to them. Yeah. You mentioned, you mentioned in there just the ability to share, I sat with a friend last week, while I we’re just having a regular business meeting jackin. And, but I could tell from the very start of the conversation that there was much more going on for him. And it was, it wasn’t even, it wasn’t a difficult thing to decipher, when they sit when the first sentence out of their mouth is you know, I’m not doing that great. So you know, right there, like there’s more going on then potentially work. And so all we did is all we did is talk, all we did is talk and listen to each other. We didn’t make any final decisions, we didn’t make any solutions about anything in particular, we just listened. And he sent me a message the next day and thanked me so much. He said it’s one of the best conversations he’s had in a long time. And I also had the opportunity to, you know, listen to someone, but I also felt good, because we’re both in a similar boat. We all you know, and a lot of people do have a lot on their shoulders right now. And use the word burden. And sometimes, I think that is almost comes across as like a negative feeling or a negative adjective. But it doesn’t totally have to be it might just mean that there’s a lot, you know, that a lot of like, my kids starting kindergarten is a great thing. But it’s definitely on my shoulders. So while it’s a burden to have it on my shoulders, I’d say it’s not necessarily a burden as in a negative outcome or a negative feeling. It’s just, it’s there, right? And it’s on us. And there’s plenty of those things in our lives that are kind of constantly honest. And they’re and they’re not necessarily negative, but they still are honest, and they do weigh us down in, you know, more metaphorical sense than physical sense. Sometimes, even physically, it just makes it it’s good to mention the idea that, you know, those burdens can be can be tough, but they’re also good. And once we get through them, when we get to, you know, we get we get to grow well, we’ll see your daughter, probably I would imagine just excel as she gets through her first few weeks of college.

Unknown Speaker 24:51
Well, I hope so. There’s a lot of money on the line there. I don’t

Speaker 3 24:59
know, but I think she I think she’ll be just, you know, she’ll, she’ll be okay. We it’s building up like the resistance, the resiliency, not the resistance, but the resiliency, just kind of the understanding that she has a lot of skill set. And she now also has a lot of choice inside that layer of onion to kind of go to when those feelings are there to kind of say, okay, how am I going to be productive, I got a big test coming up, right? I got a big paper, there’s a football game, and I got a big paper, there’s a football game, a party and a big paper, whatever it is, to help make all those really, you know, important decisions that, that we want an understanding to that kids, and even my daughter, she’s not even at that age, even though she’s 18. They’re not emotionally developed until much later in life. So they’re gonna make more mistakes, and really being there to support them through those mistakes to kind of learn those lessons is important, right? Yep. So it’s almost like we expect perfect behavior sometimes. And that’s just not really life.

Adam Salgat 26:00
Right? It’s not it’s a little bit unfair and realistic, right?

Speaker 3 26:03
Yeah. Yeah. Like, it’s easy to judge other people. But man, we don’t want to be judged.

Adam Salgat 26:07
Right? You did. Before we step into the teacher conversation about acceptance and agreement and some judgment. I want to mention, you said in there that she’ll be okay. Which was something that really came to mind when I was talking to that friend last week about oh, K can mean a lot of different things, does not necessarily mean that it has to be your highest standard of excellence and an expectation. For the start. It might simply mean, I’m getting all my homework done. And I don’t feel like I’m going to cry every day. And that’s fine. We just started right at that. Level of that is okay, for right now. And then we start building on that, right, we looked at the next little inch up to what is the next step of being okay, or, you know, really excelling and moving forward. Right.

Speaker 3 26:56
Yeah, and I think that’s, that’s a really important thing. Because knowing that we can’t be perfect all the time. And knowing that we can’t always be extremely happy all the time, right, I have to work through life, right. And that’s what we do to be successful is day to day get through kind of figuring out what we need to survive and be there in the moment and support and help each other out. So because all the good days, while bad days, we have a lot of just days, just in between days where you know, we’re still making it happen.

Adam Salgat 27:24
Right? Exactly. Let’s touch on this from the teacher aspect. You’ve got the history, the history of it, I’ve got a teacher in my life. But Talk Talk to me a little bit about the beginning of the school year, when it comes to teachers, some of the things are going through.

Speaker 3 27:41
So teachers, you know, beginning of school years, always, it’s a lot on educators in general. So it doesn’t matter if their teacher, administrator, counselor, whatever their title might be, most educators face that time when they go back into the school system that you know, right away, you’re doing a bunch of professional development or staff development, you gotta get your, your classroom ready, you have to prepare for kids to come on. Some people are switching whether grade levels or different content areas, they have to learn a whole new curriculum. And it’s usually in a really small span of time, like maybe a week, a week and a half, something like that. And then boom, the kids are like, right in front of you. So I think one of the things we just have to understand as parents, as members of the society of society, that kind of like focus around schools, is schools are very community based. And it’s important that they are because, you know, we identify with the schools that are around us in our neighborhoods, or our towns, or that our kids go to or the schools that we go, we have gone to. But while we do that, we have to understand that behind that element, are humans, right? Just like we talked about our daughters going through all these emotions, and us going through all these emotions, will educators are as well. And they’re about to have a bunch of kids through all those emotions. Walked through the doorbell. Yeah. And regardless of whether they’re a pre K, or kindergarten, an eighth grader, a 12th grader, or going off to college, everyone’s still in that moment in time. And so we think about, like acceptance versus agreement. We don’t have to force everyone to agree with our own thoughts. But I think acceptance is really important at this point in time, because let’s just accept that everyone has a lot on their plate right now. Right? And not only are we dealing with like, just back to school, which we talked about has a lot of emotion. But then there’s kind of everything else with the pandemic that’s going on. You know, all the strange weather patterns that have been happening. I know down here in Texas has been super hot, and their schools don’t have air conditioning that are starting up. So they’re, I mean, there’s things like that, that people are having to kind of deal with and go through that can create a lot of stress, and a lot of heartache and sometimes some non productive behaviors as well. So great. I think is the word that I just kind of want to push out with acceptance right now for back to school, like there’s a good chance your kid’s gonna go back to school and their schedule might be messed up, right? It might be messed up not because anyone is ill intent trying to mess your kids schedule up. It could be maybe because two teachers switched at the last moment or a teacher quit, or they hired a new teacher. I mean, it could be a lot of stuff that’s taking place behind the scenes that sometimes we don’t know about. It could be that like, your kid goes to school, and they bring all those wonderful new supplies. And they put them down somewhere, and they haven’t been labeled yet. And all sudden, nobody knows where they’re at. Right? So if you think you have, like, 25 kids, trying to find everyone’s supplies at one time could be a bit hectic. So I mean, we can go through lots of different scenarios. But just understanding that teachers are humans, they’re living their best lives as well. They oftentimes have their own kids who are starting school. And sometimes they can’t even go to like meet the teacher back to school night, because they’re doing their own activities in their school, they might not be able to deliver their own kid to kindergarten for the first time, because it’s their first day of school, and they gotta be there for their kiddos. So they’re just going through a ton of emotions and stuff as well. And here’s what I also just love about educators, they’re there because they want to be there for the kids. So allowing that grace, and that understanding, regardless of even what some of the things that the school might be mandating or not mandating. Just know that educators and those teachers, those principals, oftentimes don’t have choice inside some of those things. And just like being present, say, Hey, I understand like, you’re having a rough go, is there anything you need for me, you know, just support systems like that. It’s great to like, you know, maybe send them like a $5 gift card to Starbucks every now and then. But even so, like little presents are kind of nice for teachers. But what about just like, a personal recognition statement, right? And just like, hey, just really appreciate the way you’re taking care of my little Joey this year, you know, he really likes having you as his teacher, little things like that, or just boost and you know, your your wife’s a teacher, those are the things she comes home, and she tells you stories about, right? Yeah, she might tell you about the Starbucks card, but she might just keep it to herself, so she can get a good Starbucks on the way to work someday. Right?

Adam Salgat 32:18
Right. Yeah. Well, I’m not coffee fan, so she can have all the Starbucks. Yeah, I get your point. Absolutely. It is definitely over the years. You know, what she’s received certain gifts and things. But honestly, it when she hears from a parent, or hears a parent say that their kid said or anything like that, when she gets that feedback, that recognition. That is awesome. And she she said, as a special, special education teacher, where it’s even more difficult I, from my perspective, anyway, can can be more difficult, seemingly to see progress. So when you’re working with kids at that level of seeing progress, it feels like it takes a longer period of time than even just a school year sometimes. And so getting immediate feedback from the kids on like test scores and things like that, that’s not always there. But knowing that you’re making the emotional difference sometimes that is there. And I know she she tied herself to that. And one other thing you mentioned in there about, like, they’re like, they’re getting 25 kids into the room with 25, different emotions and all these things that is so interesting to think about, in the fact that we’re talking about, like, our two kids that are kind of starting new school stuff, right, you have one going into senior year of high school, which, you know, that’s not, she’s probably pretty comfortable. But that being said, these teachers have kids that are almost they own, they’re almost like their own kid. And now they have 25 of them, that they’re trying to work with and deal with their emotions and and find ways to connect with them. And so many different ways to connect with kids. So giving them some grace, as you said, I think can go a really long way.

Speaker 3 34:00
Yeah, and you know, at the secondary level, there have been 25 Kids flip every 45 minutes seven times, Dad. Yeah, so a lot of kids front of them. That’s true. One of my neighbors who’s a he’s a teacher, friend, he teaches also studies at one of the high schools great guy, he was telling me the other day how a parent contacted him and was really upset because he didn’t know his son’s name, the second day of school. And you know, he’s got how many kids a day flipping through. And this is a guy who is a fantastic educator, right? He really cares about kids and he’s the one who will go watch them play football or in the band or you know, on the ping pong game or whatever and

Adam Salgat 34:40
he doesn’t he does outside of the nine.

Speaker 3 34:44
In sometimes it’s just like, he will know all their names, but he just needs a little bit more time to learn. That’s a lot of names to learn on day one, let alone all our policies and procedures and everything you have to do. And names are important, critically important in there’s nobody in this rolled out wouldn’t agree more. But it was kind of a tough deal because he was very hurt by that email, because of who he is and how he wants to go forward. So sometimes it’s like understanding stop, like, take away the judgment, and have empathy and try to put yourself in those shoes to realize there are so many moving parts, the beginning of the school in sometimes stepping in those teachers shoes, and realizing that they really are trying to work through and do the best. And they’re having all these feelings and emotions as well, is an important part. Because that email really affect it kind of like his outcome, and how he felt like maybe I’m not doing a good job for kids. And I can tell you, there’s nobody else in this world, I’d rather have my kids sitting in and teaching the Solstice Class that he teaches. So we go through things, and sometimes we say things or do things, because we’re looking after our own kiddos, right? Like those are my kids, right, but not realizing the harm it can cause on the other end as well, in judgments. You know, it’s a really sticky thing and something we have to be careful with. But it’s also really hard. Because sometimes people do this thing. I call it the double Jays Adam, are you ready for this? Sure, we judge and then we justify our judgment. And that’s even more dangerous than just acceptance, right? And understanding like, why he was struggling maybe to remember the kid’s name and how he’s working through it and the different things that he does, as opposed to kind of working, you know, with that. The other side of it, too, is now what does the kid think about the teacher? When he goes home and tells mom or dad this the mom or dad say some really negative things about the teacher? And is that kid going to have a harder time accepting him as the teacher? Or is he going to start judging that teacher and create more conflict as opposed to having a productive behavior, there’s there might be more of a nonproductive behavior,

Adam Salgat 36:49
right? So something as simple as a name, remembering a name could could snowball into something worse. And I know, and we both kind of get the idea of like, where the parent was coming from. But at the same time, maybe giving them one more day to learn 130 kids names, you might have might adjust rectified this whole situation and never created any type of animosity or any type of issue whatsoever. So yeah,

Speaker 3 37:13
or just reaching out and saying, hey, you know, I know you’re working hard on names, is there anything that I could do to support and help you out? You know, realizing that we’re all in this together, or if it’s a unique or an unusual name different ways to kind of remember it and work with it. Because when you have 130 kids, not every kid pronounces a name that’s spelled the same way, the same way. And sometimes even learning that takes a little bit of time and effort as well. So yeah, teachers are, they’re truly trying to do their best just like us as parents, we’re trying to send our very best to school right now. And sometimes our kids are kind of grumpy when they get up in the morning. They’re not happy. They didn’t get strawberry part Pop Tarts today. But at the end of the day, we’re sending our very best, just like teachers are trying to do their very best as well. And they may not have had their Strawberry Pop Tart.

Adam Salgat 38:01
Many times I don’t, I’m guessing they probably don’t get to you for that cup of coffee

Unknown Speaker 38:05
yet. Exactly.

Adam Salgat 38:08
Like as we wrap up here, then tell me Is there a key takeaway that you’d that you’d ask our listeners to think about? Whether they’re a parent, whether they’re maybe a teacher, just anything that you kind of want to reiterate for them to keep in mind?

Speaker 3 38:22
Absolutely. I think the biggest key takeaway right now, parent, teachers and even kiddos is great. Like, let’s understand right now, there’s a lot of, you know, excitement, intrigue, curiosity, maybe some nerves. Some kids are even angry, like, I’ll kind of like sleeping until noon. But understand that all that stuff is happening. And if we allow ourselves grace, just with everybody that’s kind of involved. I think we can really do a good job getting this year started in moving in a good direction. Because everyone’s trying really hard. And if we just kind of like, understand that, it’s gonna be

Adam Salgat 39:04
awesome. I would just like to add teachers, if you’re listening, you’re doing an awesome job. You’re doing a wonderful job. Keep it up. Started. The school year is exciting. It can also be daunting, as I’m sure many of you have already potentially counted down to first spring break or potential winter break. I know that happens on occasion. But know that you’re making a difference every day. You’re having an impact on you. Keep up the awesome work. Mike, thank you for being on the podcast.

Unknown Speaker 39:35
Thank you, Adam is great. Let’s have a great back to school year.