Chagrin Falls Schools Kicks off Theme of “Choose Courage” for 2021-22 School Year Launches One District One Book

Chagrin Falls Schools will be conducting a year-long One District One Book for the first time.  With the success of the One School One Book for so many years at its schools, District administration is looking forward to using the theme of “Choose Courage” and have all students and staff read the book “Courage” by Bernard Waber throughout the 2021-22 school year. The theme will be integrated in all subject areas and in all grade levels throughout the year.  The District will use #CFChooseCourage on social media.

Each month, students and staff will focus on different courage-related themes.  Examples include the courage to meet new people, start a new school year, stand up for others, set goals, and make the right decisions.  There will be activities and lessons that are cross-curricular, cross-grade level, cross buildings and take place in homes and in the community. Connecting younger students with older students in the District enhances the younger students’ sense of belonging and provides older students with leadership roles they may otherwise never experience. 

Thanks to the support of the Chagrin Falls PTO, every kindergarten through eighth-grade student will receive a copy of “Courage” on the first day of school.  High school students will receive an electronic version of the book.

At the staff’s opening day convocation meeting, a video was played that showed many alumni, staff, students and community members sharing what courage means to them.  “Creating a community of readers across grade levels and between home and school, all engaged in connected activities and discussing the same book, leads to an excitement for learning that has a long-term impact,” said Superintendent Jennifer Penczarski, Chagrin Falls Schools. “Extending that community from just one school to the entire K-12 District presents us the opportunity to create a sense of connectedness throughout Chagrin Falls like never before.  As we all make our way through this pandemic, realizing all the challenges, changes in school learning, quarantines and isolation we have faced, our theme of ‘Choose Courage’ could not be more timely and relevant to unite our entire school community.”

We believe this to be an ideal time for the theme “Choose Courage” as students, staff and families find their way back from all the pandemic has caused - personal health challenges, changing school models, polarizing beliefs, quarantine feelings of isolation and more. Courage is a concept that knows no age restrictions and has no bias related to ethnicity, religion or gender. A kindergartener and a high school senior have a common experience they can share in which they have needed courage - walking into a new school, meeting all new friends, separating from their parents, and so on. The courage you need to try something new, to ask for help, to stick up for yourself and others, to face danger, to take a test, to be different, to fail and try again ...think of the connections that students of all ages can make with each other - and your children can make with YOU - through this one simple theme, Courage.

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