Attitude and Connect for 2015

I am not one of those people who makes New Year resolutions. The last thing I want is another “To Do List”.  However over the Christmas break I noticed a post by @KiwiLibrarian about “A word to guide me in 2015”  and it resonated with me as a simple but effective way to give myself a focus for the year ahead. Little did I know that narrowing it down to just one word isn’t easy (or maybe that’s just me!).  After a lot of thinking and deliberation I decided on two words – a personal and a professional word! (No doubt they will intertwine)


Those who know me will not be surprised that some of the inspiration for choosing the word Attitude has come from one of my personal heroes, Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield who has achieved so much in his amazing life. This is how he explains the importance of attitude.

“In space flight, “attitude” refers to orientation: which direction your vehicle is pointing relative to the Sun, Earth and other spacecraft. If you lose control of your attitude, two things happen: the vehicle starts to tumble and spin, disorienting everyone on board, and it also strays from its course, which, if you’re short on time or fuel, could mean the difference between life and death. In the Soyuz, for example, we use every cue from every available source—periscope, multiple sensors, the horizon—to monitor our attitude constantly and adjust if necessary. We never want to lose attitude, since maintaining attitude is fundamental to success.

In my experience, something similar is true on Earth. Ultimately, I don’t determine whether I arrive at the desired professional destination. Too many variables are out of my control. There’s really just one thing I can control: my attitude during the journey, which is what keeps me feeling steady and stable, and what keeps me headed in the right direction. So I consciously monitor and correct, if necessary, because losing attitude would be far worse than not achieving my goal.”

― Chris Hadfield, An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth

 Attitude impacts on everything and is the one thing I can control (it also encompassed quite a few of my possible words). This year I’m aiming to be more mindful so I can keep adjusting my attitude to fit the situation and achieve a positive, fulfilling and successful 2015.


I discovered this blog post Attitude Adjustment: always bring your ‘A game’ and it has some handy tips that I’m going to try. I started my Grateful Diary on January, 1st and I’m finding it a positive way to reflect at the end of each day and keep my attitude on track…

A little addition to this post…

I received a lovely surprise in my mailbox from Cath Sheard or @KiwiLibrarian who inspired me to find my words for this year.  Cath is not only a librarian but also a talented artist and she generously created a small piece of art for me based on my word “Attitude”.  I have framed it and it’s sitting next to my computer on the Circulation Desk so I can see it each day. This is a lovely example of the wonderful connections you make through Twitter – thank you so much Cath!



Connect PHR 2

This illustration from Peter H. Reynolds (of The Dot fame) jumped out at me from one of his recent Twitter posts. When I return to the LRC this year I will be re-connecting with approximately 520 students, our school staff and parent community.  It also means renewing my connections with the teacher librarian community through my Catholic Regional Network and SLAV (School Library Association) and once again connecting both locally and globally through the LRC Blog as well as Twitter. That’s a lot of connecting when you’re an Introvert!

As a teacher librarian a big part of my role is creating connections.  It is about me connecting with people or connecting people to each other. It involves a lot of time connecting students to books and reading. I also connect staff and students to resources both print and virtual, to technology tools and to ideas. This is often a challenge and I regularly feel pulled in many directions and wonder if I’m achieving anything or even making a difference.  I really want to focus on making effective and rewarding connections in 2015.

Connect for me will mean focusing on (and this list may change!)

  • Finding ways to include and connect students and parents more to the life of the LRC 
  • Exploring global projects that teachers can participate in to connect our students with others
  • Continuing to use creative ways to connect our students to books and the joy of reading
  • Inviting more authors and illustrators to school to connect with our students
  • Using a variety of ways to connect students to themselves and their world through literature
  • Introducing more technology into the LRC to connect our students in their learning
  • Connecting with staff as much as possible both formally and informally
  • Connecting with greater confidence to the wider community of teacher librarians 

It also means knowing that sometimes I have to DISconnect…

2015…time to relaunch!

When I drive to my brother’s house I pass a school whose board displays quotes that change regularly. I am always amazed how the quotes are so pertinent to me and often wonder if the person has a direct link to my mind! However, this quote was so apt that I stopped and took a photo as it summed up my 2014…

I started school at the age of 4 and a half and I’ve never left! At the end of 2013 after 28 years straight teaching and losing some special people in my life, I made the decision to take a break in 2014 in the form of a Gap Year.  I saw it as a gift of time and an opportunity to step away from my much loved LRC to stop for a while and recharge my battery.

Things didn’t quite go to plan as far as travelling overseas because my 93 year old grandfather was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer after Christmas. Pop was still living independently in a retirement village on the NSW Central Coast, but would need care and assistance.  I had promised my mum before she passed away that I would look after Pop for her. I was so glad I wasn’t at school and had the opportunity to spend periods of time with Pop, cook his favourite foods while he could still eat and pack up his home before he had to move to a nursing home where he passed away peacefully in September.  A wise friend said to me “Kim, you are where you need to be for now” and I believe that to be true.

However, I still had a wonderful Gap Year that took me to NSW, ACT, WA and parts of my home state in Victoria with adventures and fun along the way…

As the 2015 school year approaches I’ve had time to reflect, possibly reinvent myself a little and I’m definitely recharged, so now it’s time for me to follow the final step and relaunch…