Check it Moms, the Class DAD is here

I admit it. I didn’t step up to the plate at first. My son’s class needed a “class mom” (hey, that’s how they phrased it in the email) and even though I’ve spent countless hours complaining to my wife that dads are treated as second-class citizens in the school, I still didn’t take the leap and put my name on the list.


Then the next week the second email hit my inbox. The person who wrote it begged asked the moms in the class to step up to help with parties, activities, and classroom communication. “That’s all it is?” I thought. I can do that. I quickly responded to the email and heard back that there was a planning meeting for class moms the next week.


The minute I walked into the meeting, the looks and the questions began. No, I’m not here for my wife. Yes, I know this is the meeting for the class mom…or should I say class parent. Yes, I understand what the job of the class parent is. No, I’m not a stay-at-home dad. I just make time to be a part of my son’s life, just like every other parent here. Yes, I am getting annoyed. (No one actually asked that last question luckily.)


I probably sound like a broken record, but why is it that only moms are thought to take time off from work to do all the things that the schools need parents to step up for? I know plenty of dads who are willing and able to help. Frankly, “class mom” doesn’t sound like such a big job. I think I can handle it. News flash: I can also change diapers, make mac-n-cheese like a pro, and read stories to my kids every night. I bet you can too.


But baby steps, people. Baby steps. Starting with class dad, I plan to take on the establishment and rise to a position of power. This year, class dad, next year, maybe PTA officer, and by the time my son graduates, I’ll be PTA Prez. Hey, it could happen. (My wife says no one actually wants to be PTA President but I’m not going to let that stop me.)


valcard10-baby1114cmAnd for now, this class dad is going to throw the best Valentine’s Day party the 1st grade has ever seen. Yes, I can use Pinterest to make “adorable” Valentine’s Day treats, and yes, I can print out these “super cute” Valentine’s Day cards from Cricket Media to put in every kid’s goody bag, and yes, I can step up and make class dad the hottest volunteer position ever. So check it moms. The class dad is here.


The Magic of Motivation

What wakes us up with new hope every morning? What fills our dreams at night? What helps keep us going toward those dreams and goals each day? It’s that little pep-talk voice inside our heads that says, “You can do it!”


Sometimes that little voice becomes a fading whisper. Sometimes duties of the day get in the way and drown out that little voice. That’s when we need a little motivation, a little inspiration to keep going.


One of the ways to recapture that self pep-talk is to have a handy saying or poem in mind. Repeating those little affirmations out loud can be the little spark we need to keep our inspirational engine running.


The Art of Start

Don’t search for inspiration when

You have a task to do;

Just start your work and you will see

That it will soon find you.


Dreams Allowed

Don’t be afraid to dream aloud

The things you want to do;

Just saying what is in your heart

Will help your dreams come true.


Good Measure

Success is often measured best

Not by how high or far,

But what you had to sacrifice

To get to where you are.



Do not let fear confine your life

Inside a shell of doubt;

A turtle never moves until

His head is sticking out.


Heavy Mettle

Adversity is what it takes

To see our goals ascend;

In order for the kite to rise,

It flies against the wind.


Test Pattern

Each time our troubles test our will

We wonder of their use

Until we learn to keep them from

Becoming an excuse.


Think Tank

It doesn’t take an army

To think what can be done;

One person with just one idea

Is more than ten with none.


The High Road

The path to inspiration starts

Upon the trails we’ve known;

Each stumbling block is not a rock,

But just a stepping stone.


Success Full

Never doubt what you can do

No matter what the chore;

Success comes when we care enough

To do a little more.

In Sight

Close your eyes and look inside,

A mirror shines within;

To find where you are going,

First see where you have been.


True Grit

The move from failure to success

Takes more than simply grit;

It starts when you first realize

You know you’ll never quit.


Like these? How about a whole book of them?


A few years ago when I needed a little pep-talk to keep me on my path to writing poems and books for children, I began creating little motivation rhymes that grew into an entire book titled SCORE! 50 Poems to Motivate & Inspire. That little award-winning book was soon adopted by school systems as part of their Character Development programs with principals reading a poem-a-day from it during their morning announcements. Coaches and teachers began making posters from the book and hanging them in their classrooms and locker rooms.


As you read the poems above, I hope you find one or two that help renew your wishes, goals, and dreams.


You may even become inspired and motivated to write a few of your own!


Charles Ghigna – Father Goose® lives in a treehouse in the middle of Alabama. He is the author of more than 100 award-winning books from Random House, Disney, Hyperion, Scholastic, Simon & Schuster, Time Inc., Abrams, Boyds Mills Press, Charlesbridge, Capstone, Orca and other publishers, and more than 5000 poems, many of which appear in textbooks and anthologies, and in newspapers and magazines from The New Yorker and Harper’s to Cricket and Highlights. He served as poet-in-residence and chair of creative writing at the Alabama School of Fine Arts, and as a nationally syndicated feature writer for Tribune Media Services. He has spoken at schools, colleges, conferences, libraries, and literary events throughout the U.S. and overseas, and has read his poems at The Library of Congress, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the American Library in Paris, the American School in Paris, and the International Schools of South America. For more information, please visit his website at

All poems ©Charles Ghigna