Would you look at that?

Appreciate the Little ThingsI’ve recently realized just how addicted I am to my phone.

My 2-year-old daughter is the one who helped me see things a bit clearer. Imagine that? See, my 2 year old pays attention to what’s around her. She sees snails idling by on the ground. Snails! And planes that fly in the sky. She sees happy faces in the clouds and she points each and every detail out to me as we play outside.

All the while I sit scrolling on my phone. Scrolling on my phone is relaxing – I will admit it destresses me and allows me the chance to reset myself if I need a few minutes. So I’m not judging phones. I work in the virtual world – trust me, I’m not judging technology.

But watching my daughter delight in everything around her has given me a new sense of how important it is for this generation to teach the next generation (or maybe it’s the other way around) how to really stop and take a look at things. How to stop scrolling, look up, and really see things.

One of the many things I love about FLVS is that our teachers really see each and every one of our students.

This seems impossible, because after all, the teachers are in the computer far away from the students. But seeing goes behind being in the same room. And I love to hear teachers share stories about students they’ve only “seen” on the phone or in their virtual classrooms and still hear the incredible relationships they’ve built with them. Our teachers know how important it is to see each and every student. Through phone calls, text messages, and discussion-based assessments (DBAs), teachers connect with students and have the opportunity to really see our students learn and grow. It’s a beautiful, powerful, and quite humbling experience to teach online. There is a misconception that maybe our teachers are disconnected from our students just because they never stand in the same room, but this couldn’t be farther from the truth.

I’m proud to work for an organization that really takes the time to see those around them.

An organization that takes a virtual platform and builds endless relationships, strong and sturdy atop. I wonder what more we can accomplish if we all agree to stop scrolling so much, and really look around and see things. What would we see? What could we learn? How much would we grow? I believe the possibilities are endless.

If you’re feeling disconnected from your students, your teachers, your parents, your kids, your colleagues – take a minute and look around. How can you really see them and how can you reach out? Maybe all it takes is a phone call, a text, a smile, a reassuring instant message. Technology is an incredible tool but don’t get lost in it. Take a cue from my daughter, search out the snails, the planes in the sky, the happy faces in the clouds. See what’s ahead of you, and all you can embrace around you. You won’t regret it.

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Amanda SchafferAmanda Schaffer, FLVS Professional Learning Specialist, came to Florida Virtual School in 2013. As an educator, she has worked as a teacher, cheerleading coach, and district resource coach. She came to FLVS from Orange County Public Schools where she earned her school's title of Teacher of the Year in 2010. Currently she leads training for teachers and new hires at FLVS. Mrs. Schaffer is passionate about the research of Carol Dweck and helping students and teachers develop a Growth Mindset!



One comment on “Would you look at that?

  1. Jaiden

    Although being on your phone seems to be important, it’s not. What’s really important is spending time with your family all you need to do is put that phone down and spend some time with your family. Put the phone down and go have fun.

    Reply

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