Monthly Archives: March 2019

Facebook Friends Do Not Equal Lifetime Friends

Blog Friends

My heart was racing, my palms were clammy, my stomach felt nauseated, and tears were stinging the corners of my eyes. I was slowly walking with my union rep over to the administrative conference room because I was being questioned on something I had said to a student.

A colleague was being terminated and the students were so sad about this because they had the utmost respect for him. They wanted to start a petition but that didn’t go as planned. One student approached me and asked what she could do. My suggestion: “maybe bombard the administration with emails??”

This student, who I still love and respect today, wrote these words on her Facebook page: A faculty member says we should bombard the administration with emails.

Goodness…I didn’t even have a Facebook account and Facebook got me in trouble. 😲 Let me ask you…which part of that message do you think caused me heartache?

Fast forward 15 years. I have a private Facebook account with my husband. When I started the account over a decade ago, the plan was to have only family members be ‘friends.’ So much for that plan. 🙄 Today I am at 529 ‘Facebook Friends,’ and I’m not sure when I decided to accept more than family.

May I ask you a few questions? Jot down your answers, please. Ready?

What do you believe makes a true friend?

How many “friends” do you have on Facebook?

How many of your Facebook friends possess those qualities you just listed as a ‘true’ friend?

Got your answers??

I asked our teacher candidates those same questions. Compare your answers with theirs. The #1 friendship trait mentioned by 23 out of 27 teacher candidates (25 female, 2 male) for a response rate of 85% was:

Great friends are there for you no matter what.

Other true-friend traits mentioned were: someone who truly cares about you, supports you, accepts you for who you are, gently corrects you when you’re wrong, picks up exactly where you left off after not seeing each other for a while, and makes you laugh.

The teacher candidate’s ratios of true friends to Facebook friends will not shock you, or maybe they will? Below are a few answers of those who responded.

Mariah – 4/598, Danielle – 1/349, Amber – 50/1006, Hayley – 15/534, Maizie – 20/462, Shelby – 3/959, Victoria – 5/383, Kali – 5/653, Jenna – 10/311, Stacy – 40/651, Brendan – 7/681, Tah – 50/5000

Facebook friends DO NOT equal lifetime friends!

Teacher candidates…please remember Facebook does not give the full context of what is happening in your life. It’s all about perspective. As public school educators, you will always be under the microscope of the community you teach in. Your Facebook ‘friends’ may see a picture you posted and, not knowing the full story that goes along with that picture, those ‘friends’ may perceive it as you not doing your job, or you drinking too much, or whatever assumptions are made; which could then lead that ‘Facebook friend’ to report their speculations to administration.

Maybe, just maybe, it’s time for ALL of us to consider the ‘friends’ we have on Facebook and do a little house cleaning.

If you are going to post something on Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/Snapchat and feel a strong ‘nudge’ not to…listen to that nudge! (That is speaking from experience. I was nudged, didn’t listen to that nudge, and my picture post caused heartache for someone else). Keep in mind the possible ramifications of your social media usage.

Let’s return to 15 years ago. Which word do you think caused me heartache? If you guessed ‘bombard,’ you are correct! Maybe suggesting “email admin” would have been a better choice than “bombard admin with email.”

The suggestion wasn’t given with a ‘get-em’ attitude. It was just an idea. When it was read on Facebook, it was interpreted as vicious; which I am not.  All turned out fine. It was a learning experience, and no matter how painful they can be somethimes, we learn from our experiences, right?

I’d like to leave you with this Reason, Season, and Lifetime poem.

Blog friendship poem

Stay Calm & Be a Lifetime Friend,
Profs Dr. Wendy. & Dr. V.


When Storms Rage On In Life or In Classrooms…Regain Your Control

Blog storm kelo 2

Flash flood – “a sudden local flood; raging torrents after heavy rains that rip through river beds and streets.” Or in our case here in the Midwest, “raging torrents happening due to heavy rain during winter months when the ground is still frozen and the sewage drains are blocked by 5 feet of plowed snow.” There is nowhere for the water to go…besides over roads, in fields, and in basements, schools, and hospitals. 😥

With the temps dropping below freezing, now we get to add to the flash flooding the new term used by meteorologist, Brian Karstens, a “Flash Blizzard” is pummeling the area!

Flash blizzard – “a sudden local blizzard ripping through our communities.” The wind is howling, the snow is horizontal, and nature’s fury is screaming at us.

Sometimes teaching can feel like a flash blizzard. One moment all is good, and the next moment a storm rips through our classrooms. Yikes! Raise your hand if you can relate! 🙋

I remember Andrea…a 3rd grade girl who went from happy to ANGRY in .02 seconds. Oh my goodness. No gradual decent with that kid. It took us all off guard and shook us to the core. When her ‘flash blizzard’ would hit, the teachers had a code blue plan in place for her. We needed to keep her safe and we needed to keep the other students safe. We had a special room for her to go so she could calm down. A place where she could listen to soothing music and fill her lungs with oxygen.

If and when Andrea was ready to visit, she would sometimes share what was causing her to be so upset. Usually, within 30 minutes or so, she was ready to return to her classroom.

Anger is not bad or good. Anger is an emotion we all experience and those teachable moments will arise for us to teach our students HOW to deal with their anger. Hurting others or self is not okay. The best way to get started on anger prevention in your classroom is to visit with your school social worker and ask her/him for ideas. Prevention is always best.

I can guarantee you will experience “flash blizzards” once in a while in the classroom. Thank goodness these storms are rare. When they do rip through our classrooms, let’s have a plan in place. Also, keep in mind what Brian Mendler says about storms like this, “the behavior isn’t the problem, it’s the solution to the problem.”

Always remember…it’s okay to have a good cry when classroom storms hit. I know I certainly did! Just don’t wallow in those tears.  Regain your control and ask others for support when you need it.

When life rages on, the song below helps me find peace in the middle of my storms.


Prayers for all who are experiencing the challenges of this storm right now…the flash flooding and flash blizzard. I pray for everyone’s safety! 🙏

Blog storm kelo

Stay Calm & Survive the Storms!
Profs Dr. Wendy. & Dr. V.