Love is at the Heart of Stanley

Posted by Stanley Communications on 3/10/2022 3:00:00 PM

Love is at the Heart of Stanley


When I visited Julie Colthup and Emily Sprayregen’s K-1-2 class in February, they were writing about Love. Here are the children’s words:


Love is calm and safe

Love is peaceful and playful 

Love is happy and kind 

Love is mindful

Love is easy

Love is caring 

Love is sharing 

Love is including people in the play 

Love is being with your friends and looking out for them 

Love is good sportsmanship and helping someone up 

Love makes other people happy and hopeful and loved 

Love is being you

Love is when you have a very tight connection with someone because no matter what happens in either of your lives you stick together.

Love is integrity and respect

Love is friendship and nice 

Love is family and friends

Love is warmth inside 


How to spread love is: giving hugs 

Giving stuff that you really want to someone else 

Being nice and kind when playing with others

Love feels good 

Love Is You.


Love is being respectful to the Earth and people. 

Love is joy and spreading our love to the world 

Love Is Love.


Love is not typically talked about in the context of a school setting; and yet, it is a driving force for parents, teachers, and students. There are many kinds of love, the love you have for your children, the love you have for your parents, the love you have for your extended family, the love you have for friends, the love you have for your dog, the love teachers have for students. Many languages have more than one word to describe love; the Greek language has seven!


Stanley teachers show their love many times every day in small ways like following up on something the student said or did, bending down to have a conversation at eye level, providing a resource about a passion or interest, supporting at a challenging moment, or sharing a new perspective. Stanley teachers listen deeply everyday. Educator, Parker Palmer, explains the value of listening, “Behind their fearful silence, our students want to find their voices, speak their voices, have their voices heard. A good teacher is one who can listen to those voices even before they are spoken-so that someday they can speak with truth and confidence.” 


He goes on to list what it means to listen to a voice before it is spoken. “It means making space for the other, being aware of the other, paying attention to the other. It means not rushing to fill our students’ silences with fearful speech of our own and not trying to coerce them into saying the things we want to hear. It means entering empathically into the student’s world so that he or she perceives you as someone who has the promise of being able to hear another person’s truth.” Each of these ways of listening is love in action. As Katie Russell, former K-1-2 teacher and current teacher coach, says, “Small things can make a huge difference and our teachers fill their classrooms with love through small actions every day.”


As witnessed in our K-1-2 classrooms in February, our youngest Stanley students understand the power of love. As Regie Routman, says in Read, Write, Lead, "It’s always all about relationships, in school and in life. When those relationships are genuine, caring, and trusting, all things are possible.” 


May we all remember and experience the power of love in our lives.