the Most Of Your True Talents And Keep Your Dreams Alive ”
Editorial by Robert
We all want to be good at what we do. Whether we are
engaged in sporting activities, work related tasks or
recreational hobbies, we all have this intense desire to do
Unfortunately, we soon come to realize that it is a
cruel fact of life that there is no way we can be good at
everything. Some people are natural athletes - others
couldn’t catch a ball if their life depended on it. Some
children are gifted students and come home with straight A’s
every year. Others struggle just to get passing marks.
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
, is the first day of class for elementary and secondary
school children in the area. As such, I think the following
story about Sparky is appropriate and should be shared with
“Sparky didn’t have much going for him. He failed
every subject in the 8th grade and in high school
he flunked Latin, algebra, english and physics. He made the
golf team, but promptly lost the only important match of the
season, then lost the consolation match. He was awkward
socially - more shy than disliked. He never once asked a girl
to go out on a date in high school.
One thing, however, was important to Sparky - drawing!
He was proud of his artwork even though no one else
appreciated it. He submitted cartoons to the editors of his
high school yearbook, but they were turned down. Even so,
Sparky aspired to be an artist. After high school, he sent
samples of his artwork to the Walt Disney Studios. Again, he
was turned down.
Still, Sparky didn’t quit packing his suitcase! He
decided to write his own autobiography in cartoons. The
character he created became famous worldwide - the subject not
only of cartoon strips but countless books, television shows,
and licensing opportunities. Sparky, you see, was Charles
Shulz, creator of “Peanuts” comic strip. Like his
character, Charlie Brown, Shulz may not have been able to do
many things, but he made the most of what he could do.”
And so, as we embark on yet another school year, we are
reminded that our job as parents and teachers is to provide
children with experiences and opportunities that will develop
their natural talents and skills to the fullest. We must help
them find what they do best, and once that discovery is made,
we must facilitate the development of those particular skills.
While it is always a admirable to help children strengthen
their weaknesses, we should never forget that it is impossible
for a child to grow up to become an adult who is “good” at
The good athlete should be encouraged to train and
develop his/her athletic skills and to explore careers that
will utilize those skills. The person who has a passion for
reading should be given every opportunity to read and fuel
that passion. The talented artist should be allowed the
freedom to be creative and excel in that field.
challenge facing the education system today stems from the
fact that we are constantly facing pressure to have a child
achieve “straight A’s” in every subject on the report
card. A child who achieves A’s in
and Writing and C’s in Mathematics causes great concern for
his parents and teachers. He is often given extra help and
homework to bring up his math mark and although he may improve
his mark in math to B, he may have had to take time away from
and Writing, seeing those marks drop down to a B.
Our goal as a teachers and parents should be to
encourage the student to excel even more in
and Writing, aiming for an A+ in those areas. Research has
shown that as one improves his/her areas of strength, the
areas of weakness will also grow. By pushing for an A+ in
and Writing, there is every likelihood that you will also
bring the Math mark up to a B naturally without having to do
much extra work. The improved “learning skills” developed
in reading and writing will be transferred to other subjects.
So, if you
are one of the few who are good at everything you do, thank
your lucky stars every morning. If, however, you are like most
of us, follow the example of Charles Shulz and make the most
of what you can do. Find your passion and add fuel to it for
the rest of your life. Everything else will follow.
a good week!