Above: Students fly paper airplanes that illustrate aspects of their learning journeys, focusing on metacognition and community building.
Eye to Eye is proud to partner with Microsoft Education in our shared mission to empower students everywhere. Eye to Eye focuses on serving the one in five students with learning and attention issues like dyslexia and ADHD, emphasizing the importance and development of social and emotional skills in the journey to self-empowerment and success. Microsoft, with its toolkit of assistive technologies, provides students the tools to accommodate how they learn best.
Together, we are working with educators and students across the country to unlock greatness.
Eye to Eye’s mentoring program
Eye to Eye is run by and for people with learning and attention issues. We bring many different types of resources to schools: mentors, speakers, events, digital tools, and the strength of belonging to a community of different learners. The empowerment of students through our mentor program is at the foundation of all we do.
For our after-school mentoring programs, Eye to Eye organizes and trains college and high school students, who have learning and attention issues, to mentor younger students who also have learning differences like dyslexia and ADHD.
“As a high school science teacher, I love to watch the growth I see in my students as they participate in Eye to Eye as mentors with their middle school mentees. High school mentors develop a strong sense of confidence surrounding their learning differences, are strategic about advocating for themselves, and love to share the strategies and skills they have gained while navigating middle and high school. The empathic, inclusive community that E2E creates is life changing for high school students, who may feel like they ‘don’t belong’ in the typical classroom setting, and for their middle school mentees who gain so much from working with them.”
– Lauren Sessions, Science Teacher at Peak to Peak Middle School, Boulder, CO
Eye to Eye is an easy-to-implement, proven social-emotional program with impactful results. We accept applications to start new school chapters continuously and are accepting applications through April 1 for the 2018-2019 school year. We invite you to join thousands nationwide in a vibrant community of different learners. To start a mentoring chapter in your school, contact us at [email protected].
David Flink, Founder and Chief Empowerment Officer at Eye to Eye, also captured the collective stories of Eye to Eye in an inspiring guide called ‘Thinking Differently,’ available in digital, audio, and print.
To see Eye to Eye’s work in schools, take a look at PBS’ American Graduate Day:
Social and Emotional Learning: A Key to Success
Both Eye to Eye and Microsoft share a core understanding that social and emotional learning empowers students to succeed in the classroom and in life. This is particularly true of students with learning and attention issues.
“Eye to Eye Mentors offer an invaluable social-emotional intervention for our students who learn differently.”
– Lisa Krempa, Director of Special Education, Uncommon Schools
According to the National Center for Learning Disabilities (NCLD), “More schools and mentoring programs are incorporating social and emotional learning (SEL) into their curricula. SEL may be especially beneficial for students with learning and attention issues because it helps them understand their strengths and needs. But schools should be prepared to provide targeted SEL supports to help students who struggle with self-reflection and self-regulation.”
Microsoft’s research with McKinsey & Company has doubled down on the importance of SEL. Their research has found that students “will graduate better prepared for their futures if they have a strong social and emotional foundation.”
Eye to Eye’s app: EMPOWER Different Learners
The smartphone has expanded our ability to bring the resources of Eye to Eye to more kids in more classrooms. Eye to Eye has developed an app for iPhone, Eye to Eye: EMPOWER Different Learners to help students on their social-emotional journeys to success. Used in collaboration between students and their teachers or parents, the app leads students through a series of quests where they discover their own unique learning style. On conclusion of their quests, each student receives a personal “My Advocacy Plan” (MAP). The MAP is a powerful tool for students, teachers, and parents who need to advocate for accommodations and support.
“Using the app in the classroom has launched my students into a journey that has lasting power! Through the series of exercises my students have become more self-aware and empowered. By also identifying challenges, they can play off of a growth mindset, creating goals to help them navigate and advocate for themselves in their next academic or life setting.”
– Kate McElderry, Teacher and Curriculum Specialist at The Odyssey School, Baltimore, MD
The Eye to Eye App: EMPOWER Different Learners features a section of tools and sites for students, including links to the Microsoft OneNote App and the Microsoft Learning Tools site.
We believe that part of mentorship is to inspire by example. At Eye to Eye, we have a national speaker’s bureau that advocates and inspires at schools in all 50 states. We call them Diplomats.
Some Diplomats are Alumn’Eye of Eye to Eye’s mentoring programs. Our Senior Diplomats are recognized leaders in the field of education, cognitive diversity, and social entrepreneurship.
“I have seen tremendous growth in the academic performance of my students who are participating in Eye to Eye. Their improved self-esteem and self-advocacy comes shining through.”
– Bari Levin, Learning Specialist at Golf School District #67, Morton Grove, IL
To bring a speaker to your community, contact our outreach and community engagement department at [email protected].
Empowered and independent through technology
Eye to Eye’s mission to empower students through social and emotional learning is a perfect complement to Microsoft’s assistive technology features included in OneNote and across the Office 365 platform. At Eye to Eye, we believe students deserve all the accommodations they need to be successful, and Microsoft is meeting the needs of students in classrooms by providing best-in-class assistive technology tools. We look forward to working with Microsoft Education, its schools, and its teachers in empowering all students – including the one in five who learn differently – to unlock the greatness within. To learn more about how you can bring Eye to Eye to your school, please reach out to us at [email protected].
– Marcus Soutra, President, Eye to Eye