Checking in with Sheridan’s Susan Milsk
The Thanksgiving Turkey Feather bulletin board is a tradition at Sheridan, allowing students to write and decorate “feathers” to show the things - and people - for whom they are grateful, says Principal Susan Milsk.
Principal Susan Milsk highlights the ways Sheridan celebrated Gratitude Month.
How did you recognize National Gratitude Month at Sheridan?
We celebrated National Gratitude Month a few ways. We had our annual District-wide H.U.G.S. Food Drive, which I think really shows gratitude for all that we have. Students brought in food and we were able to provide 300 bags of food to needy families for Thanksgiving. We know that food insecurity has risen dramatically here in Lake County during the pandemic, so celebrating all that we have by giving to others is certainly a meaningful way to show our gratitude.
Additionally, we showed gratitude to our veterans through our Veterans Day Celebration! We had Jeff Brincat (whose son Roman attends first grade at Sheridan), Sgt. Brett Marquette of the Lake Forest Police Department, and former Sen. Mark Kirk join us. The three veterans spent time explaining the significance of the holiday through the lens of the flag-raising on Iwo Jima by U.S. Marines as well as Marine Corps flags. Additionally, Sen. Kirk taught the kids how to salute and we concluded with the Pledge of Allegiance. It was truly a meaningful and memorable experience. Students were also given the opportunity to write letters to VA hospital patients or to new recruits at Naval Station Great Lakes in order to thank the service members. This was another way that Sheridan students expressed their gratitude this month.
Lastly, we continued a long-standing tradition — our giant Thanksgiving Turkey Feather bulletin board! Students write and decorate feathers to represent different things - and people - for whom they are grateful. We display this during November and it really brightens our Sheridan Community.
As the first half of the school year heads toward a close, are there any standout events or actions you want to highlight?
I would simply like to highlight the students and our school/community partnership. Our students have demonstrated so much resilience by happily getting back into all of our old routines, as well as learning new ones. They have enjoyed visiting Specials again, practicing their inquiry skills in Science and Social Studies units, and accelerating their learning in all areas. I am also incredibly grateful for the partnership exhibited in the community as we weather our second year of the pandemic. We know that everything isn't back to normal yet, but we are getting there! I am also excited to have our Virtual Holiday Storytime back by popular demand. I can't wait to see our Sheridan Sharks snuggled up with hot cocoa for a holiday story in December!
What are you most looking forward to in 2022?
I am looking forward to celebrating my third year as a part of the Sheridan community! It is such an incredible community to serve, even in trying times. The support and commitment to the holistic well-being of our staff and students is truly remarkable. Our students are so resilient and have weathered these interesting and historic times so well. The growth I have seen in the students has been astounding! I am just looking forward to continuing to build on our relationships, support the future growth of our students, and continue to meet the needs of the community.
Principal Susan Milsk, pictured with some of her students.