Posts tagged ‘teaching’

March 27, 2013

What we should tell our kids, every day . . .

A wonderful quote from Spanish cellist Pablo Casals:

Each second that we live is a new and unique moment of the universe, a moment that will never be again.  And what do we teach our children?  We teach them that two and two make four, and that Paris is the capital of France.  When will we also teach them what they are?  We should say to each of them, “Do you know what you are?  You are a marvel.  You are unique.  In all the world, there is no other child like you. . . . Your legs, your arms, your fingers, the way you move. . . . You have the capacity for anything.  Yes, you are a marvel.”

Every child deserves to hear this, spoken with unrestrained energy and enthusiasm, from an adult in his or her life.  Don’t you think?

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January 31, 2013

Book recommendation — “Beyond the Sky and the Earth” by Jamie Zeppa

Beyond the Sky and the Earth: A Journey into Bhutan by Jamie Zeppa is a well-written, insightful account of how travel (and the willingness to leave your comfort zone) can transform you, change you, and, ultimately, lead you to the one thing you’ve been looking for all along: yourself. An excellent book. I liked it so much I quoted from it three times this month — on January 5, January 7, and January 23!  Highly recommended!

Cover of the book "Beyond the Sky and the Earth:  A Journey into Bhutan" by Jamie Zeppa

“Beyond the Sky and the Earth: A Journey into Bhutan” by Jamie Zeppa

November 2, 2012

Children. . . . The future of our past

My children are the future of my past.

These words come from Alyce Johnson, a professor of First Nations Studies at the University of Northern British Columbia and a member of the Kluane First Nation in Yukon.  She shared them yesterday as she led a group of six women on a “trail talk” along the trails of Forests for the World, a park and demonstration forest in Prince George, B.C.

Alyce spoke to our small group, of which I was a member, about how trails — whether “natural” or “man-made” — carry knowledge of people, landscapes and traditions, and help define languages, narratives and, ultimately, world views.

To me, Alyce’s words drive home the importance of immersing our children in the stories, protocols and traditions of our families, our people, our communities, our earth.  The past (and our cultural histories) cannot be integrated into the future unless carried there by our young ones.  We must therefore equip our children well for the task.

I also love this beautiful quote from a handout Alyce provided during the walk:

I am a map of a storied world expressed from a language that the earth remembers and a people speak.

The Earth remembers, a people speak, and we are one.

(The “Trail Talk” I attended was one of a series organized by the University of Northern British Columbia’s Northern Research Group.)