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Since 1925
The news that keeps us Onward On!

The Carroll News

The news that keeps us Onward On!

The Carroll News

Letters from Leah: Elementary school is key


Windom Elementary school is situated on Sheldon Rd., nestled in the boundaries of Orchard Park, NY. The K-5 school is around the corner from Highmark Stadium, home of the Buffalo Bills. From age five to ten, this was where I experienced the foundations of learning.

Strangely enough, Windom is distant from the upscale parts of Orchard Park. It’s on the edge of Blasdell, NY, which presents a completely different demographic and psychographic panel. The area surrounding Highmark Stadium can get rowdy on Bills game days, leading to a gritty, blue-collar mentality associated with the streets surrounding Windom.

I am so thankful for that.

Orchard Park has a reputation for wealth. The public school system is competitive and rigorous. Athletics require high levels of skill often and creative arts opportunities are fit for those with utmost passion. While this is a blessing, assisting students in real-world readiness, I think our foundations tend to have the most impact.

Elementary education is marked by some of the most formative years of an individual’s life. One is constantly receiving stimuli, engaging with new people and being exposed to basic educational pieces that are set to lay the groundwork for years to come.

But, aside from the actual learning part of elementary school, it’s essential to understand that these years also work to form some perspective on the world around us. Kids learn to work with others in environments that are separate from their homes. One learns to play, to question, to ask, to understand and to develop simple relationships.

My current best friend was a girl that I met in the second grade at Windom. We did what most seven year old girls would do. We laughed, we used our imagination, we sat in class and followed directions, but most importantly, we established a lifelong friendship.

My ties to Windom are those of honesty, reliability and a reminder to remain humble but maintain confidence in my capabilities. Windom serves as a way for me to enjoy the simple moments of life, to invest in today for a better me tomorrow.

Elementary school is important and entirely impactful. It teaches us how to engage in the world and reminds us to live within the present moment. I look back on my first year at Windom, struggling to remember most of the day-to-day happenings. But, I know that five year old me is benefiting from being in that space to this day.

I guess my message isn’t clear. But I believe it’s because there’s a lot to gather from these formative years of my life. I suppose that overall, it’s key to remember that there’s no point in wishing away today. Embrace the current moment and be thankful for experiences in the past. You are here for a reason and each moment is building on your capability for the future.

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