Opportunities For Growth

--Originally published at Flipped Learning

"Hardships often prepare ordinary people for an extraordinary destiny!" ~ C.S. Lewis

Each and every one of us controls our destiny. We control our thoughts, our emotions, and our reactions to difficult times and situations. For many, when faced with adversity, dwelling on the negative comes naturally. We tend to find what's wrong with a situation and pick it apart. However, to change our habits means we must change our beliefs. Education and educators tend to be no different. If we are to grow as professionals, we must be willing to throw out the half-empty glass and exchange it for optimism and hope.

Opportunities For Growth, or OFG's as I like to call them, are all around us. We have the unique opportunity to change our mindset in every challenge and circumstance we face. Rather than pick apart a new initiative, we can choose to find the OFG built within the framework of that very initiative. For example, how many of us approach professional development as an opportunity to learn and grow? How many of us are willing to take risks to learn from our mistakes?

If we are to foster a growth mindset in our students, we must be willing to first foster a growth mindset within ourselves. My initial exploration into flipped learning was driven as an opportunity to better use the time I had with students. The opportunity for growth far outweighed any drawbacks I could think of or read about. Wouldn't you know that my students continued to find ways to grow with in my math classes and thrive using a new teaching concept. Oddly enough, my students started to turn in their assignments through photos, video, graphic organizers, and via email. They were willing to try something new because they saw the risk I took and felt comfortable enough to do the same.

Undoubtedly, education today is filled with obstacles to overcome. We are faced with increased class sizes, increased PD requirements, increased accountability, and so much more. However, if we take a moment to sit back and reflect, perhaps the increased demands are asking us to grow! We have an opportunity to change the face of education as we know it - to be a proactive culture that fosters creativity, innovation, and growth. The next time you are faced with adversity, find the OFG!


Image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/foam/5465731118

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