Kurt Sanford, President of Global Operations for LexisNexis Group, conducted a seminar for Oakwood Student Council leaders last Friday on the attributes of leadership. Student Council Advisor Rich Curlett brings in speakers periodically to inspire students to examine their role as student leaders. “Leadership ability to some degree is instinctive,” said Curlett, “But there is a lot about leadership that can also be learned.”
Sanford framed his remarks by comparing the characteristics of leadership students identified in this year’s presidential candidates. Students recognized both candidates’ ability to connect with voters and clearly convey their vision. Students believed both candidates exhibited the high moral integrity that attracts others to trust and follow their lead and vision. Sanford encouraged students to read about great leaders and listen closely to people they consider leaders.
Students also learned Sanford’s perspective on the difference between being a great manager and a great leader. A manager must have strong organizational skills and the ability to implement a plan. A great leader must possess excellent managerial skills but must also have the
imagination and integrity to convince people that they want to go in the direction the leader envisions.
Mr. Sanford’s willingness to speak to students is one of the things that make this academic community so amazing observed OHS principal Joe Boyle. Students see that a person in their community, responsible for leading a company in the global market place, makes time to share with them his thoughts on leadership. The seminar exemplified how the 40 developmental assets are imbedded in our community. Student Council Secretary Adam Sobol took the initiative to arrange the seminar.
Oakwood Mayor Judy Cook has proclaimed that Saturday, Nov. 15 is Oakwood Band Day. Throughout the fall, Oakwood residents have thrilled to the sound of the band at football games home and away, community events, tailgating parties, and even during the band’s Wednesday night practices. It’s “the band that never quits,” according to director Ron Nelson.
Led this year by a group of exceptional seniors, including Field Commander Marc Skill, the band is a well-trained, enthusiastic and talented group. The band was challenged this fall during Mr. Nelson’s recuperation from an illness. For two weeks during October, the band conducted rehearsals, half-time and pre-game shows at football games, and special community appearances without the direct leadership of their teacher. The Oakwood Band Parents Association joins Mayor Cook in congratulations and appreciation.
Band students will celebrate their day on Nov. 15 by going door-to-door in Oakwood to take orders for fruit and cheesecake and to accept donations. The fruit sale is one of the Band’s largest fundraisers, with proceeds used for instrument purchases, enrichment programs, and support for junior high and elementary school bands.
The freshly picked fruit arrives by truck on Saturday, Dec. 13—in time for holiday giving and enjoyment. Call Theresa Taylor at 299-8398 for more information about the fruit sale.
At the Eleventh hour of the Eleventh day of the Eleventh month the conclusion of World War I was signed. Our nation has focused on this day of the year as a way to observe and celebrate the end of war and more recently to focus on the contributions of those who have served our nation in all military conflicts since. Such efforts are highly appropriate and our schools know this.
Educators know well that there are times when events provide them with a “time to teach” because the students already have their attention on the topic. Veterans’ Day is a good
example of this “teachable moment”. Many schools find teachers of different subjects working together to provide meaningful interdisciplinary teaching which gives added focus to the topic and helps students integrate their learning in each of these subjects.
For example in the days prior to Veterans’ Day students are likely to study how veterans have contributed to our nation and to finding lasting peace. Analyzing charts/graphs and considering scientific advances such as medical care might be studied. They often will be doing some writing in the form of reports, poems, or letters to those currently serving our nation. Art classes may well be viewing patriotic art of the past and having students produce their own artistic messages to/about veterans.
In Music classes some of the classic songs of past wars may be a key part of the curriculum. Students not only listen, but also sing and/or play
such songs. John Phillip Sousa’s famous march, “Stars and Stripes Forever,” is sometimes used as a powerful teaching tool. Near the end of the march, Sousa featured the tiny and shrill piccolo solo above the rest of the instruments. Some see this as his sending a message that our flag represents all voices and their right to be heard.
On Veterans’ Day or close to it, many schools have assembly programs for the entire student body. Some make and send special invitations to veterans living nearby and to current members of the military in the area.
All of these types of typical school activities are designed to help the youth to learn about the roles and contributions of veterans. They also seek to help the children to learn about our governmental system and how it works. Such ‘teachable moments’ are valuable times and our schools do make use of them.