Introducing Meaghan, a New Canaan-based mother of two and our latest Meet a Mom. She’s now in her fourth year as Head of the Lower School at New Canaan Country School. Find out more about Meaghan, including her favorite local spots and the best advice she’s gotten from a fellow mom.
How many kids do you have and what are their ages?
I have two children. My son Connor is 10 and my daughter Rosie is 5.
What brought you and your family to New Canaan?
Zack and I were living in Bedford and were familiar with New Canaan. When an opportunity opened up for me to work at New Canaan Country School, we fell in love with the school and the town. New Canaan offers so much to us and our children – countless family-friendly activities, great restaurants, and wonderful people. It is a beautiful place to raise children.
What’s your favorite family activity to do in the area?
We love to spend time at Waveny, whether playing soccer on fall weekends, or hanging at the pool during the summer months.
What’s your role at New Canaan Country School and how long have you been working there?
This is my fourth year as the Head of Lower School (Grades 1-4) at NCCS.
Best part about your job?
There is so much to love about my role at such an incredible school, but of course, the best part is having the opportunity to work with young children and to see them thrive. My favorite part of the day is watching the children enter our Lower School building. They arrive at school with such joy – they skip, romp and bound happily in. I love seeing how much our students love coming to school each day.
As an administrator, what have you learned from your students?
Children are incredible teachers of how to live a joyful and meaningful life. One great lesson we can take from children is how to be present. Children are naturally gifted in offering their full presence to the here and now in any given moment. Coupled with this is a child’s aptitude for wonder. It is a gift to share the wonder with children every day at school. Watching a child’s face light up as they learn never fails to inspire joy!
Name one thing people would be surprised to know about you.
People who know me professionally are always surprised that I was terrified of public speaking right through my early twenties. It is amazing that I am in a role where public speaking is an essential part of my job, and I actually really enjoy doing it! This is why I love how often our students are asked to practice speaking in front of big groups, even at the earliest of ages. By practicing from a young age, children build their comfort zone and confidence in an important skill that many adults still find fearful.
How do you unwind when you need some “me time”?
Self-care is important! I love taking our dog Scout for walks and am thankful any time I can curl up with a good book. Also, I am slightly obsessed with my Peloton bike and am on it several times per week.
Any words to live by?
Two simple words to live by: Be Grateful. I am a firm believer that gratitude is key to a happy life. I teach this to my own children, and I talk to our students about gratitude often at school. If we can look at each day through the lens of all we have to be grateful for, rather than what feels lacking, we can have much fuller, richer, happier lives.
Favorite band, book, TV show
Music – Bruce Springsteen; Book – The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry; TV Show: The Office
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve gotten from another mom?
My own mom is the best to learn from! Above all, she has taught me to really enjoy these years with my kids – to have a ton of fun with them and to love them for who they are at each age and stage.
Anything else to add?
What resonates most after two decades of being an educator is how quickly childhood passes by. As parents, our days can be fast-paced, stressed and busy, and it can be hard to slow things down for our children. However, research proves time and again how essential play, downtime, and connected family time are for our children’s well-being and happiness. So, any time we can hit the pause button on the busyness of life to offer a slower pace to our children, we give them an essential ingredient of a joyful childhood. Childhood is a precious and fleeting time in life and they only get one!
Favorite Places in Town
Grab a drink with friends: Uncorked
Spa/Salon: Belle Visage
Grab coffee: Zumbachs