Ryan Hawks, Creative Development
I’ve walked down the lower hall of ScenicView from the west entrance to the atrium hundreds of times. But other day, around mid afternoon, as I was walking down the left side of the hall, I stopped as I noticed a giant rainbow on the tiled floor 15 feet in front of me. In my 6 years at ScenicView, I don’t recall having seen such a rainbow there before. The spectrum of colors were due to light reflecting from the glass on the second floor within the atrium down the hall.
What surprised me more was when I walked forward several feet and noticed the rainbow was gone. I took several steps back, and sure enough, there it was again. I then took several steps to the right side of the hall and was once again surprised to see the rainbow had yet again disappeared.
It was only when I stood within a small area in the hall that the rainbow appeared vibrantly on the floor. If I shifted just a few feet in any direction, it lost its vibrancy until the rainbow had entirely faded so that no one would have noticed it was ever there in the first place.
I was so excited about it, I had several staff come witness the phenomenon with me. I wanted someone else to see and appreciate my newly found perspective.
It is amazing the things that we can see if we take the time to shift our perspective and see the world in a different way than we normally do. Shifting our perspective just a few feet applies in a multitude of scenarios at ScenicView Academy.
As a student, we may ask you to learn an old skill a new way that may challenge how you have always done something. For instance, I had a student who always hit the volleyball with just his right hand. Sometimes he would get the ball over the net, but more often then not, it would go in random directions. When he was willing to try a new way of hitting it with two hands, his perspective shifted and he found his ability to get the ball where he wanted it to go improved. But it required him to try something new and shift his perspective.
As a parent, how your son or daughter is progressing may not look just like how you want it to. They may be choosing a different career path, or making life decisions different from what you would like them to do, or they may simply be moving slower than you hoped they would. But shift your perspective a little bit, and you will see your student as someone who has gained new insight about themselves, the world, and their autonomy, and as such, is making progress—even if it that progress looks different than how you would define it.
As staff, we are in the process of going from a 4 terms in a year to 3 semesters in an effort to create more learning time for the students in and out of the classroom. It is requiring each of us to look at our program a little differently, in a way that is often uncomfortable and challenges how we have always done things. Just as we encourage our students to step out of their comfort zone, be flexible, and try new things, it is important we do the same. When we adjust our perspective we find new, exciting, and more effective ways to serve our students.
Sometimes all it can take for us to learn new things, or to help others grow as they need to, or for us to discover a new and better way to do things is to simply move our feet, and shift our perspective.
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