Saturday, October 31, 2009


In these uneasy economic times, many people are worried about whether their supply of money will be sufficient to carry them through, but all of us – including my young students – can rest in the guarantee that our supply of good ideas will always be more than ample. The scholars in my class may not have enough money to buy a rock concert ticket, but they can always get an adequate amount of ideas to write an intelligent essay. Money isn’t always ready and waiting to flow into their lives, but ideas, in a sense, are. Each of my students is at the receiving end of a pipeline from an infinite reservoir of thoughts, and the thoughts are always prepared to start flowing as soon as the student opens the pipeline. That’s all it takes. The students simply have to open a gate in their minds and let the brimful thoughts spill down into their lives, and into the essay. Students sometimes say they don’t have any good ideas for a specific essay, but that’s like saying there’s no water coming out of a tap that hasn’t been turned on. Of course there’s no water, and of course no ideas are evident if the students don’t realize they have to turn on the tap of their minds. It’s really a question of trust, of acceptance. The ideas are there, filled up full and all set to sustain and nurture my students. The kids just have to open the pipeline and accept them. If I can help them learn to do that, my students will find that the stream of ideas will be steady, and sometimes staggering.

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