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From the Teacher's Desk:


This week in our LA 7 class, we've read a short story called 'Goalie', by Rudy Thauberger. It's an interesting story about the challenges and successes of a hockey goalie as he follows his dream in the sporting arena.

Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens. - Carl Jung

This week in our LA 7 class, we've read a short story called 'Goalie', by Rudy Thauberger. It's an interesting story about the challenges and successes of a hockey goalie as he follows his dream in the sporting arena.

As part of their assignment on the story, I've had my students pick out some descriptive adjectives and then categorize them as relating to the main character's physical description or his personality.

In our elive class today (June 9), I chose a sentence from the story that modeled what I was asking the students to do. The sentence read: 'You imagine him on the ice, focused, intense, single-minded'.

The three adjectives at the end of the sentence related, of course, to his personality. As a sidebar, one of my students said those adjectives reminded her of her father. Her comment got me thinking.

I responded that displaying those personality characteristics was quite often a good thing, especially during a hockey game or when studying for final exams.

Focused, intense, single-minded - isn't that what it takes to bridge the gap between vision and dream accomplishment?

Speaking of vision, when Google co-founders, Sergey Brin and Larry Page, were just starting out as college students with an idea. They apparently approached a venture capital firm in Silicon Valley, California, in order to solicit funding for their enterprise.

When asked what their vision was, the two budding entrepreneurs politely replied: "To provide access to the world's information in one click."

Now that's an inspiring vision! The Google guys were certainly focused, intense and single-minded.

When I think about highly successful companies in North America today, clarity of vision comes to mind. Just by googling the vision statements of famous corporations, it's easy to see why they are where they are in the business world.

As an example, here's the vision statement of Tim Horton's: 'Our vision is to be the quality leader in everything we do'.

How about the one for Nike? It states: 'To bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world'.

Okay, just one more - it's for the famous computer company, Apple: 'To make a contribution to the world by making tools for the mind that advance humankind'.

With vision statements like those, it's no wonder those companies are thriving in the marketplace.

But what about having a life vision? Do you have a vision for your life you can articulate at the drop of a hat, or fit within the 140-character limit of Twitter?

I think all of us would do well to follow through on that. What if we printed our life vision on our business card (if we're in the habit of carrying one)?

It was important for Blessed Mother Teresa to do just that. Her business card displayed the following powerful words: 'The fruit of silence is prayer; the fruit of prayer is faith; the fruit of faith is love; the fruit of love is service; the fruit of service is peace'.

Leonard Quilty is a teacher with the Center for Learning@Home in Okotoks, Alberta. He can be reached by e-mail at 'lquilty@redeemer.ab.ca'.

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