I was given the wonderful experience of hearing Kevin Carroll recently. One thing he shared in his talk about play was having a Look Up day. I sat in a room of many people outside of the school world that I live. He encouraged people to look up rather than at a screen for one day. See the world around. Notice life in a three-dimensional way.

As I sat there, I thought how lucky I am to work in a place that is full of the many dimensions. The learning and teaching that keeps our school buzzing is amazing. The richness of relationships and community is incredible. And I would say that every time I am able to move throughout the building, I take that time to “Look Up”. I am intentional in what I am seeing happening in the building.

It is important to not just see the happening in the classrooms but I also enjoy stopping a student in the hallway to talk. I find our Joyner students are very open to share what is happening in their worlds. They offer the book title they just checked out. They talk about the scratch they earned on the playground. They mention the conflict they might be having with a friend. They tell me about the project they are working on at home. These moments are just as important in understanding what we do at school each day.

Absolutely, our children are here to learn. Our job is to keep them safe and teach them. But I am grateful when I see the ‘so-much-more’ coming from staff. I have a team of adults that make sure children are met each morning with a positive greeting. I have a team that listens to the funny stories from the weekend. I have a team that wants to know why green is their favorite color. The little stories that our children share and connect with the adults in this building with are vast and far-reaching and all important.

I am also thankful for our families that “look up” everyday as well. We have so many parents who connect with so many children as they bring their own in the mornings. Some are committed to volunteer weekly and building relationships and sharing their love of learning.

I encourage our community to continue to notice how we all look up and jump into this fun world of school each day.