“Words Do Inspire”

It should come as not surprise that these were the words spoken by a great public speaker: “Words Do Inspire.” Words, as I mentioned in a previous post, are an inexhaustible resource.  They can be used and reused countless times in countless many ways and never get old from overuse.  Words like “I”, “the”, “as”, and the like are even less like inexhaustible and more like eternal.  Yet, the question today regards what exactly it is that makes a word truly inspiring.  Is it the context or can a word on its own, regardless of context, be innately inspiring?    Similarly, if a phrase is inspiring then where does the inspiration lie within that phrase?  I hope we can look at some of the greatest orators of our time and procure our own answers to these questions.

Can You Pick the Single Point of Inspiration?
Can You Pick the Single Point of Inspiration?

By this point, surely you, the reader, have already begun to form words in your head that are inspiring to you in particular.  These words may include but not be limited to examples such as “Glory”, “Endurance”, “Champion”, “Best”, “Teamwork”, or “Victory” which all invoke a sports-like feeling, recalling images of the Olympics or the World Cup.  Others of you may conjure up words such as “Positivity”, “Patience”, “Honesty”, “Happiness”, or “Smile”, of which all concern your own personality rather than a distant goal.  Still other readers may be thinking now of words like “God”, “Heaven”, or “Blessed” which are clearly more spiritual in nature and thus draw inspiration from beyond—rather than from within—oneself.  Each person is unique. Continue reading

Teaching vs. Playing: Classroom Techniques

Everyone is a Teacher, Student.

Everyone is a Teacher, Student.

Several weeks ago I was informed quite to my pleasure that amongst all the teachers and all the classes at my middle school, I had been voted (by the students) as the favorite.  I was, of course, flattered by their kind words and humbled to be so warmly welcomed in such a short amount of time but I could not help but wonder why it was that I was chosen and whether or not it was actually desirable to be so.

Given, there is not much more rewarding and motivating as praise from your peers for your good work.  To me, the worthy and sincere congratulations and appreciation from others is better and more self-satisfying than my paycheck–especially on those sour Mondays or long Wednesdays.  Yet this was something different.  I was not chosen by my peers as the best teacher in Sindorim Middle school, I was chosen by the students.

In college I remember one such professor that all the students admired (and still do) who was formally known as Professor Ackerman (though he preferred to be called simply by his first name) who won similar recognition from us students when I was a senior.  All of the students adored him!  We were positively enthralled to see him anywhere on campus, he was always volunteering and participating in student-let activities, in the classroom he always maintained a high energy level and even managed to remember every single student by name (and he had quite a few students!) Yet, when it comes to what I learned in class I will admit, and not a bit proudly, that my reports and final marks were quite mediocre.  Despite his enthusiasm and personable character, I found it easier to be his buddy so to speak and talk with him as such rather than as a professor.

Then what is the objective of being a teacher? Continue reading