I have an admittedly complicated relationship with navigation tools. While the app, Waze, has saved me in countless ways--from traffic, police traps, and more-- I have no doubt that Waze is also partially responsible for the mid-life atrophy of my sense of direction. That being said, I consulted Waze on Friday night because we needed to be in Maine by 11 on Saturday morning. Five hours. Ugh. I looked at the directions, trying to figure out the detours or traffic jams that were adding to what I would have guessed would be a four hour trip, but the traffic all seemed to be flowing.
"Set the alarm," I said to my husband, Garth. "We should leave by 5:30."
In the morning, we grumbled through morning routines.
"My Waze is saying 3:45," Garth said.
I looked at mine again. Five hours. We agreed that made no sense, and we pulled out of the driveway at 5:35.
I tried restarting both our apps. The journey was about the same distance, but his still registered as less than four hours, and mine still registered as more than five. How could this be? Finally, I checked my settings, and I had one check that was making a huge difference. Avoid toll roads. When I unchecked that box, the app reset itself, and our phones matched. We'd arrive at 9:30 for an eleven o'clock soccer game.
"Sorry," I said. "We could have had that extra hour of sleep."
Fortunately, Garth is a pretty forgiving guy, and we had a good laugh, but it got me thinking about how we question or don't question information that we receive. We have lessons in our curriculum to teach students about what to do when they find discrepancies in their resources, but how often do we authentically come across real-life situations where the information really does make a difference--in our case, an extra hour of coveted sleep! It's a connection I'll share with students when I have a chance. Sometimes small seemingly small details really do make a big difference.