FLOW Day celebrates passion found in hobbies

Sandy Cho, News Editor

The strong pungent smell of nail polish permeated the chemistry hallway as eager students craned their neck to see if chemistry teacher Robin Taylor’s room was open for entrance.

Taylor’s demonstration, “Fingernail Decorations and Techniques for Sprucing up Your Manicure,” was among the 55 programs offered during FLOW Day, which was held during the time normally allotted for eighth period on March 21.

Inspired by the theme of “flow” in this year’s One Book, “Drive,” written by Daniel Pink, the school decided to create the first FLOW Day in order to promote the concept of staying fully immersed in an activity that one enjoys.

“I hope students learned about a lot of topics that give people joy that they may not have thought of before,” English teacher Kate Lewis, who helped create the day, said. “I also hope that students started thinking about how activities that give them ‘flow’ can be parleyed into lifelong activities – even jobs.”

Guest speakers, teachers and even students participated in holding special talks, ranging from their experiences of going on exotic trips to enjoying the “New Yorker” magazine.

“It was nice listening to teachers talk about their passions outside of school,” junior Christina Zhao said.

Zhao visited physics teacher Adam Smith’s talk on his vacations, biology teacher Aubrie Holman’s arts and crafts lessons and Georgetown University professor Brooks Holtom’s exercises on decision making, titled “Why Do Smart People Do Dumb Things?”

In fact, Fairfax County Public School (FCPS) Board Member Ryan McElveen held a talk, titled “The Joys and Perils of Social Media Stardom,” in which he discussed the
“flow” of social media and how it can be both positive and negative. Afterwards, he took selfies with interested students.

“I enjoyed Mr. McElveen’s talk because he was so relatable and very comfortable with the student dynamic,” sophomore Arya Sivadhanam said.

Though this is the only year FLOW Day will be held because of its link to the One Book and One Question, students were inspired to continue engaging in their “flow” and even finding another one to pursue.

“FLOW day has inspired me to try to find flow in just about anything, even within everyday things like online social interactions,” junior Caroyln Chheath said. “I was especially inspired by Mr. Campbell—someone who has truly discovered the flow in his profession. We should all strive to find the same flow demonstrated by Mr. Campbell in our future careers.”