This post was written in recognition of Child Abuse Prevention Month.
My first realization that not all parents behave as loving parents was in the third grade with news that Penny’s mom had hit her over the head with a trophy. It was shocking, as child abuse was not a topic you typically heard of in the 70s, but conversations soon sprouted throughout our small suburban school and community.
Fast forward to today, and news of children being neglected and abused is far too prevalent.
Every child deserves to grow up in a safe and loving environment and it is our duty as parents, educators—as humans—to look after them.
Over the past few weeks, you may have noticed pinwheels have popped up in your community and throughout Florida. A ceremony was held in Tallahassee earlier this month on the lawn of the Turlington Building, which serves as the home of the Florida Department of Education. These pinwheels represent Pinwheels for Prevention, a national campaign that engages communities in a coordinated effort to prevent child abuse. Continue reading
Innovation doesn’t simply involve throwing technology into a classroom. It requires unconventional ideas, foresight, thoughtfulness, and dedication to student learning. And as the world becomes more connected, schools are making every attempt to help students develop the skills they’ll need to be a part of that interconnected world.
In the Florida Virtual School (FLVS), students are learning in unique ways while developing these much-needed skills through individualized and personalized learning methods, said Sarah Sprinkel, FLVS elementary principal.
FLVS is one of two Community Winners in the eSchool Media and Xirrus Innovate to Educate awards program, which recognizes the unique ways schools and districts are leveraging technology to improve student learning.
At FLVS, our teachers and support staff make up the heart and soul of our organization. All of our efforts are centered on the lives of the individual students we serve.
This month, one of our staff members and his daughter (a student at FLVS) are especially representative of this mission as we join the statewide 5k Walk for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
Mike Smith, FLVS Peer Counseling and Critical Thinking Skills teacher, says that his family has been a proud supporter of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital for more than 25 years. His cousin (who happens to be getting married the same day as the walk this year) was treated and cured there in the early 1990s. Now, Mike’s family is once again part of the St. Jude mission to cure all children stricken with cancer. Continue reading
It’s August and that means it is back to school!
For much of Florida Virtual School, our teachers and students have been hard at work – even through the summer months.
Of course, the new school year always brings with it anticipation and excitement for the year to come. In traditional schools, there are some eagerly anticipated back-to-school traditions.
So how do we do these in our virtual world?
Let’s walk through a few back-to-school basics!
When I share with people (especially those who are teaching in traditional classrooms) that I’ve shifted into high gear preparing for a new year with my students, I must admit, I’ve gotten a lot of puzzled looks and questions, like “What exactly do you need to do? I mean, you teach virtually.”
Before I answer (or take offense), I take a relaxed breath and smile.
Because, like them, exactly one year ago, I didn’t have a clue.
So how do virtual elementary teachers prepare for a new crop of eager learners? Luckily, for all the new teachers just starting this adventure, the blueprint is surprisingly similar to a brick-and-mortar school. The 2016-17 year kicked off this past week by building community. Continue reading