When I asked students this week to define what the word respect means to them, they used vague phrases. I shared with them how I found the same to be true for me. This core value requires reflection in order to consider its full meaning.

When I searched for the definition of respect, I found the verb “to admire” a curious synonym. “To acknowledge the value in someone or something” seems to be closer to the generic understanding of the word. However, it makes sense that if we are to respect one another, then we must find a trait we admire. When we think of respect from that point of view, our grasp of the word is made clearer, and it encourages us to look for the positive qualities in others to admire.

Our students were quick to point out that respecting people is not the only way to demonstrate this important quality. Students of all ages are passionate about respecting our earth and its resources, property, creatures, and belongings. I enjoyed listening to their ideas about caring for our earth, which they believe requires respect every day.

As we observed the Veterans Day holiday last week, I asked the Brimmer community to reflect on ways to show our admiration and respect for their sacrifice. Their courage and brave commitment to protect our country and its people are valuable and deserve respect.