Monday, November 10, 2014

Do Fathers Matter?

Do fathers matter?  

Olivia gives her dad Russell a BIG squeeze.
Well of course they do!  I mean this is a no-brainer- we can all agree on that point, right?

Clarissa and her dad, Jose.
Yes, we can.  But we also know how things can get for dads, with economic pressures, job responsibilities and various commitments inside and outside of the family that constantly draw our attention away from our kids. Moms of course face these same concerns and many more of their own, but at the end of the day they are and will always be MOM.

Bella brought her dad Jeremie.
 For us dads, not only do we matter to our kids, but our kids matter to us!

Taleah is showing dad Clayton the ropes around here at the Mighty Gibbs PreK!
The organization Strong Fathers Strong Families is in the district and on a mission: to improve the educational environment in order that men may be more involved in the lives of their children.  

Ray came here with his daughter Maddie.
They are here in Huntsville working with our elementary schools and our childrens' fathers to promote, remind and build understanding in the power they have in their children's lives, and to help facilitate our District's growth in tapping our dads' tremendous power to do good!

Albert and daughter Esme.
They've already hosted "Bring Your Dad to School Day" at Huntsville Elementary School, Samuel Walker Houston Elementary School and Gibbs PreKindergarten Center, and are headed to Stewart Elementary this Wednesday, November 12th and 
Scott Johnson Elementary this Thursday, November 13th. 

Xavier came with his son, and listens to Mike speak.

Today we caught up with J.Michael Hall and the close to 200 guests that came out to Gibbs PreK Center for their "Bring Your Dad To School Day."   

Stick with me Dad, I'll show you how to do it!
Julio with daughter Kayla.

After the dads had a chance to have breakfast with their kids, they experienced about 40 minutes of the morning's activities with the children in their classroom.  Then the children continued on with their day while the dads circled back to the cafeteria for an appreciation and an acknowledgement of their roles, some insight into their position as fathers, and ultimately a challenge.  
A challenge to be the dad they know they can be.

You think we'd leave the moms out?  Are you crazy?!
Jillian with her Strong Mom Crystal.  There were lots of Strong Moms here!

What does that look like?  Well it's giving yourself permission to get involved with your kids...spending time with them...getting to know more about their education 
(things have definitely changed since we all went to school!) and 
simple but powerful actions like reading to your kid!

Pre K Teacher Charity Joseph snaps a pic for a dad and son.

After the beginning of the year, we will work with Strong Fathers on a Math Morning and a Science Night.  Look for more information on these events, including dates, in the coming weeks.

Food tastes better with you.

Many of us are already on our way to being the dad we want to be, walking daily on that balance beam of fatherhood.  Today's event reminded our dads that they are part of a community, and they are not alone on this journey.  It's the hardest, best job a father has, 
and we don't have to go it alone.

Listening to Mike: Kenneth came with his son.

Strong Dad, Strong Kid, Strong Mom
Aaron, daughter Shamaya and mom Shalinda.

Aaden and dad Travis.

Sonny Cruse at the Welcome Table.
Our Interim Superintendent has been able to come to all of these breakfasts so far.
I count three balls and one chicken in the air.
This is one way to get to know your fellow dads!

Mr. Archuleta looks like he might like to throw a chicken!

OK, now it's getting a little intense!!

Strong Fathers' J.Michael Hall and Gibbs PreK Assistant Principal Albert Archuleta.
We will see Mike back later this week at Stewart and Scott Johnson,
and then a bunch more times after the beginning of the year.

Definitely a Sign of Things to Come.
Fathers gaining insight and confidence to be the Dads they know they can to be.

This morning at Gibbs PreK.
Outside it was rainy and cool, inside it was sunny, warm and bright!

Huntsville ISD Huntsville Independent School District Matthew Lahey

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