Conners provides teachable moments
Woven into academic work at Granby Elementary School are teachable moments in emotion management.
Students have learned how to recognize feelings, ways to deal with those related emotions and come up with a plan to ensure healthy habits are practiced in handling those emotions.
“Sometimes there are things that happen that you have to work through,” said Stephany Collins, music teacher, told Granby students during a recent assembly.
Collins introduced someone who knows all about emotion management in overcoming adversity: former Fulton City School District student Tim Conners. Conners and his guide dog, Lang, visited Granby to connect with students on the importance of having a grateful attitude no matter what circumstances occur.
Students learned that Conners, who referred to himself as “Tim Possible,” was diagnosed with cancer at age 15 and lost his vision a few months later. He detailed the struggles of completing daily tasks, working through school and finding himself again. He had students close their eyes and imagine if they opened them again if there was only darkness, constantly.
The key to overcoming his struggles, he said, was accepting the situation and utilizing the following tools: persevering through problem solving, viewing the world optimistically and succeeding with others. When struggles bring negative thoughts into a child’s mind, Conners told them to just smile, laugh and be grateful and that child could then pass that positivity onto others. That is what he did all the way up Mount Kilimanjaro before he reached the summit in late May. Big dreams, he said, can come true if the students work hard to achieve them.