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The Good Place

Be Kind

“A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees.” – Amelia Earhart

Host-Cari Barocas | 3rd Grade Teacher | Started Aug 2021

Hello, and welcome to The Good Place. My name is Cari Barocas and I am your host for the month of February.

When my son was little, he had a lot of anxiety about bad things happening in the world. In Kindergarten he wanted to leave school early when he learned of Martin Luther King Jr’s assassination. He met with the school counselor and we discussed it nightly for months. He cried in a New York City Deli because he saw news of an attack in the Middle East. I asked him if these events made him scared for his own safety. I wanted to understand what he was feeling. He told me that while the events were scary, he was more upset that there were so many bad things in the world.

My husband and I teach our kids to take responsibility wherever they can. So my son and I talked about our responsibility in the world. Sure, there are bad things in the world. So what can we do about it?

We may not be able to stop the bad things, but we can be kind. It’s inconceivable how much power we have to do good in the world.

Kindness is a lot of things. It can be big things or small things. Learn to say hello in someone’s native language. Bring a friend coffee. Give someone a doodle on a post-it note. Tell a person why you appreciate them. Even when our world feels scary, or things seem bad, take responsibility. Lead with kindness. And watch that kindness spread as you touch people along your journey.

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Cari lives with her husband and twin 4th graders in Dunwoody. She drinks copious amounts of Diet Coke, alternates between the Hamilton and Dear Evan Hansen soundtracks on the way to work, and believes there’s nothing more beautiful in the world than the hot light at Krispy Kreme.

If she could live anywhere in the world, she’d split her time between New York City and London, England.

Experiences and Events

Programs

During the 2021-2022 school year, the Good Place will post a variety of monthly programmatic opportunities to prioritize your well-being. Check it out.

February Programs

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National Make a Friend Day – Friday, February 11

There are no strangers in the world, just friends you have never met.” February 11 is National Make a Friend Day! Friends help us through challenging times. They provide comfort through a safe, emotional space where we can be ourselves. While tried and true friendships bring us comfort, new friendships can open us up to new experiences.

On this special day, make an effort to meet – or at least talk to – someone new. Your life could change forever!

Friendship bracelets are available at the front desk in each building. Stop by and pick one up for a special friend in your life.

How else can you celebrate National Make a Friend Day? Check out these suggestions:

  • Flash a smile and say “Hello”– Make a friend. In fact, try for as many as you can.
  • Revive old friendship – Out of touch with your college buddies? Has it been too long since you talked to your childhood friend? Maybe today’s the day!
  • Understand that friendship is a sweet responsibility– Friendships need to be nurtured and valued. If you cherish a person, sometimes you have to work at keeping them in your life.

 

Random Acts of Kindness Week – February 13-18

A Random Act of Kindness is simply doing something nice for someone else, without them asking and without you doing it for anything in return. Let’s make kindness the norm! Here are a few ideas to show random acts of kindness and celebrate throughout the week:

  • Smile at 5 strangers
  • Hold the door open for someone
  • Give a compliment
  • Thank someone who you appreciate
  • Offer your help to someone
  • Treat someone to a coffee or tea
  • Tell your family members how much you appreciate them
  • Call a friend or family member you haven’t talked to in a while
  • Email or write to a former teacher who made a difference in your life.

Additionally, encouragement cards can be picked up at the front desk in your building. Pick one up and share it with someone who may need it!

January Programs

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Summit Counseling Center
As an employee of The Mount Vernon School, we recognize the importance of mental wellbeing and strive to support the social, emotional wellbeing and resilience of our employees.

Our partnership with The Summit Counseling Center allows our community to lean into additional resources to help nurture and sustain one’s mental health. Whether you are looking for counseling for the challenges of life, or in need of professional therapy, Summit fosters a safe, confidential, caring environment in which lives are reclaimed, relationships are revived, and hope is renewed.

The Summit provides a wide range of specialty services for individuals, couples and families. therapists are fully licensed and offer professional counseling integrating body, mind, spirit, and community.

The School will cover the cost up to 3 sessions. Thereafter, you will be responsible for the cost which is a discounted rate for being a MV employee. For more information or to get started, visit http://summitcounseling.org or call (678) 893-5300 to schedule an appointment. 

Yoga – Thursdays, 3:30-4:30 | Upper School
Activate the body and breath with this Vinyasa-style class featuring a continuous flow of alignment-based postures, to engage the body and release the mind. Suitable for all levels, offering modifications for individual needs. 

Pilates – Mondays, 3:30-4:30 | Upper School
New to MV, Pilates offers a form of low-impact exercise that aims to strengthen muscles while improving postural alignment and flexibility to strengthen your core. 

Pelotons 
Check out the five Pelotons in the upper campus MAC available to all employees. Three of the bikes require cycling shoes. Join the Peloton group by adding the tag “MVMoves” to your profile in your app and get cycling.

Walking Trails 
Did you know that the MV upper campus has walking trails around the Upper Campus. Physical activity has a huge potential to enhance our wellbeing. A short 10-minute walk can increase our mental alertness, energy and help increase our mood while helping to reduce stress and anxiety. Be intentional, create a walking group or just take a mental break and take a quick walk along the trail.

December Programs

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Coat Drive 

We have extended the collection of the One Warm Coat drive through December 10! The mission of One Warm Coat is to provide free coats to children and adults in need while promoting volunteerism and environmental sustainability. Consider donating gently worn or new coat(s) to help those in need.

In addition, for every coat you donate, you will be able to record one-hour of service towards the school-wide 50,000 hour goal during our Year of Impact. Check out more information and submit your hours here.

Hot Chocolate & Ugly Sweater Contest-Wednesday, December 15

On Wednesday, December 15, FLIK will be serving hot chocolate and pastries to all faculty and staff from 7:30 – 9:30 am.

  • Lower Campus- Fellowship Hall
  • Middle School-Art Gallery
  • Upper School/HQ-US Cafe

In addition, we will be having a sweater showdown – Wear your fluffiest, ugliest, funniest, and warmest sweater for a chance to be crowned as the winner! Further details will be announced via email

November Programs

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Retirement 1 on 1– Virtual Meetings with Principal Retirement

Are you on track for the retirement you want? Get there with help from a virtual 1 on 1 retirement education meeting available to MV employees at no cost. During your virtual meeting, you can discuss:

  • Your unique needs and goals
  • Gaps in your savings
  • Protecting your income and assets
  • Completing a rollover

Before your 1-on-1 meeting:

  • Set up your principal.com username and password*
  • Gather information from your paystubs, retirement plan statements from previous employers, individual retirement account (IRA), and/or other financial statements and estimates

Schedule your virtual 1-on-1 session today at principal.com/virtual1on1.

Coat Drive 

We are excited to announce our upcoming One Warm Coat drive and invite you to participate and support our efforts. Beginning November 1 through November 18, each division will be able to collect gently worn or new coat(s). The mission of One Warm Coat is to provide free coats to children and adults in need while promoting volunteerism and environmental sustainability.

In addition, for every coat you donate, you will be able to record one-hour of service towards the school-wide 50,000 hour goal during our Year of Impact. Check out more information and submit your hours here.

Waffle House Food Truck-Tuesday, November 16

As a thank you to all faculty and staff, there will be two Waffle House food trucks onsite the morning of November 16 from 7:30-9:30am.

October Programs

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Cooking with Benny –  October 20 & 21
Enjoy an afternoon with FLIK chef, Benny, and learn how to make butternut squash soup and a healthy, hearty salad to take home for dinner. Registration is limited to the first 15 people and the cost is free!

Wednesday, Oct 20 | 3:30-4:30 | Upper School Cafe | Sign-Up

Thursday, Oct 21 | 3:30-4:30 | Lower School Fellowship Hall | Sign-Up

Dyslexia Dash – October 16
Presented by the Georgia Branch of the International Dyslexia Association (IDA-GA), the Dyslexia Dash is a 5K run/walk to raise money for important dyslexia resources, including low-cost teacher training, seminars, support groups, and referral and advocacy services.

Register today and join The Mount Vernon School team.

Glee Club – Weekly on Thursdays
Join fellow faculty and staff for a weekly Glee Club! No experience necessary! This is a time to get together and enjoy making music through song.Sheet music and words will be available as well as song links to go back and listen if you missed a week. No commitment necessary and no performing if you don’t want to. Just come have fun!

Please complete this form to receive more information and see if this is something you’d like to be a part of.

Details: Weekly-Thursdays | 3:30-4:30 | Lower School Sanctuary Building

September Programs

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MV is excited to launch free on-site wellness programs designed to fit every experience level this fall.

Yoga – Thursdays, 3:30-4:30
Activate the body and breath with this Vinyasa-style class featuring a continuous flow of alignment-based postures, to engage the body and release the mind. Suitable for all levels, offering modifications for individual needs. Sign-up and masks required.

Pilates – Mondays, 3:30-4:30
New to MV, Pilates offers a form of low-impact exercise that aims to strengthen muscles while improving postural alignment and flexibility to strengthen your core. Sign-up and masks required.

Pelotons – Available everyday
Check out the five Pelotons in the upper campus MAC available to all employees. Three of the bikes require cycling shoes. Join the Peloton group by adding the tag “MVMoves” to your profile in your app and get cycling.

Walking Trails – Wednesday, September 15 @ 3:45 pm
Did you know that the MV upper campus has walking trails? Bring a friend and join Nicole Martin on Wednesday, September 15 @ 3:45 pm; meet at the clocktower in front of the Middle School Building! Physical activity has a huge potential to enhance our wellbeing. A short 10-minute walk can increase our mental alertness, energy and help increase our mood while helping to reduce stress and anxiety. Be intentional, create a walking group or just take a mental break and take a quick walk along the trail.

Flu Shot Clinic – Wednesday, 9/29, 8am-4pm
MV will offer an on-site flu shot clinic at no cost to you. Save the date for Wednesday, 9/29 to receive your flu vaccine. Details to follow.

FEATURED PODCAST

The Power of Kindness | Simon Sinek

Oxytocin, the chemical responsible for feelings of love and connection, binds us as human beings.
In this Mindset Moment, Simon talks about the power of kindness and the chemical reaction we have to acts of generosity.

More Recommended Podcasts

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February 2021

Be Kind. Be Positive. Be Yourself- Giving Our Heart Grace & Patience

Little Shots of Kindness-Could kindness make us more well?

January 2021

Release Stress And Get More Rest-Radio Headspace

Don’t Forget to Breathe-Radio Headspace

Ceasing to be Caught in the Waters of Mind-Michael Singer

Novermber 2021

A Bit of Optimism with Simon Sinek-Gratitude with Carolyn Adams

Oprah’s Super Soul-What I Know For Sure: Connection & Gratitude (highlight podcast)

Radio Headspace-An Attitude of Gratitude 

October 2021

Let’s Talk About Kindness-Radio Headspace

September 2021

Huberman Lab – Maximizing Productivity, Physical & Mental Health with Daily Tools

Hurdle – How To Start (And Stay) Running

Optimal Daily Health – Exercise As Stress Relief (Part 1) & Exercise As Stress Relief (Part 2)

August 2021

On Purpose with Jay Shetty Podcast: “Why You Need to Take a Break and 6 Ways to Make More Time to Rest Every Day, Week, Month, and Year”

The Happiness Lab: Reconnect with the Moment

With Friends Like These: The Secret to talking About Hard Things is to Listen w/Anna Sale, author of “Let’s Talk About Hard Things.”

Brene Brown and David Kessler on Grief and Finding Meaning

Presentations & Tools

Well-Being & Resilience

Resources and TOols

Pathways

Explore various pathways — physical, mental, emotional, social, and spiritual — to recover, recharge, and return. Beyond the highlights, dive deeper in each pathway to discover ways to cultivate well-being and resilience.

Physical

Excercise

Sleep

Hydration

Nutrition

Get Outside

Mental

Mindfulness

Meditation

Take a Break

Puzzles

Create Something

Mental Pathway

Calm App

The Crossword

Social

Connection

Fun & Play

Talk to a Friend

Ask for Help

Take a Class 

SPIRITUAL

Prayer

Volunteer

Rest

Nature

Reflection 

Summit Counseling Center

Our partnership with The Summit Counseling Center allows our community to lean into additional resources to help nurture and sustain one’s mental health. Whether you are looking for counseling for the challenges of life, or in need of professional therapy, Summit fosters a safe, confidential, caring environment in which lives are reclaimed, relationships are revived, and hope is renewed.

The Summit provides a wide range of specialty services for individuals, couples and families. therapists are fully licensed and offer professional counseling integrating body, mind, spirit, and community.

The School will cover the cost up to 3 sessions. Thereafter, you will be responsible for the cost which is a discounted rate for being a MV employee.

For more information or to get started, visit http://summitcounseling.org  or call (678) 893-5300 to schedule an appointment.