What’s Love Got to Do with It?

In this “Month of Love”, our society focuses on love. At BLS, our primary focus is on loving our students.   So, what does love have to do with educating young minds? Why is love so important in a healthy school? It is because love is everything. Children will not thrive unless they have a sense of belonging and acceptance. Love is a motivator for learning.  Abraham Maslow, a famous educational psychologist, is well renowned for bringing us an understanding of this motivation with his Hierarchy of Needs Theory. Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs Theory indicates that human beings are motivated by five basic categories of needs: physiological, safety, love, esteem, and self-actualization.  Until the basic needs of students are met, which includes love, higher levels of achievement are not possible. As educators, we know this theory to be true. When students walk through our doors, most of them come to us with their physical needs met, an abundance of love from their homes, and a feeling of worth and belonging. A loving school compliments this wonderful home life and helps students reach great heights. Sadly, not all of our children are that fortunate. The fact that some children come to school without their physical needs met, feeling unsafe in their home environments, and not having that assurance of love, requires that love be paramount in the school setting. Students cannot learn unless their basic needs are met, and that includes the need of love. Meeting physical needs, loving children, ensuring they feel safe in a predictable school environment, and building children’s self-esteems is not an option for a school; it is requirement for excellence.

I am not talking about just a feeling when I am referring to love. Love is not just a “touchy-feely” kind of phenomenon. Love is an action. Love means reaching out to all children with acceptance and grace.  Love requires sacrifice.  Love requires kindness. Love requires correction and discipline. Love requires humility and patience. Love requires protection.  When we love students, we will strive to offer them the absolute best academic experience possible. Love requires striving for excellence in all things. Love demands that we as educators give our absolute best to students. Every child. Every day.

Happy “Love” Month from BLS!


Angela Willmett, Principal

Betty L. Smith Early Childhood Center

Seminole Public Schools