The Canada Goal - Past Events - School Divisions & Districts

Stonewall Collegiate G 9-12 - Stonewall, MB
Interlake School Division
Session 1 - Senior version - Art Of Focus - 75 minutes
Session 2 - Individual Leadership - Growth & Success - 60 minutes
Day 5 of week four and the last date to complete the Northern Manitoba February Focus Month.
First and foremost... Although this is our first visit to the school for Canada Goal presentations... Stonewall Collegiate is very important to me as we've have been building a relationship for over 10 years... providing professional entertainment services as part of their/our graduation celebrations... Having said that it almost felt like going over to my friends house... : ) and I must say... "Stonewall, I'm so proud of YOU!" You could hear a needle drop throughout the presentations with the level of focus/concentration in the room. Furthermore... we ended the second session after lunch had started and still it appeared not one student left the room when asked to come forward for a school community photo. Top notch community spirit...!
A couple of highlights from the day;
1. The mural on the wall in the gym that reads;
"Impossible is an opinion... not a fact!"
This BOLD and POWERFUL thought provoking statement captured me with a PUNCH as soon as we arrived for set up... I thought to myself - Wow... what a bold statement... I wonder how many students read this and have difficulty capturing the value of statement? The second thought was how exciting it would be to find a moment during the presentation to briefly venture down that rabbit hole... That opportunity did present itself and we hope to have stimulated growth toward students/our inner ability to think deeeeeeply...! ; )
2. Pako Chambers... (Spelling???) I really appreciate your coming forward (both to talk to me directly on the side after the first session - then again during the second session wind-up activity) and the particular level of intention that can require for an individual to feel compelled to do so... This is a VALUABLE trait/habit and thank YOU. In my opinion, YOU represented your-self, your school and your community with dignity and class today! The same goes for the rest of the school, you just fired up your potential a little louder... I'm also mind-full that this learning experience presented itself at the perfect time for other students... : )
3. Margaret Ward prior principal and Jason Cassils current principal... You can't fool vibration... and I respect and appreciate yours... !
Take good care.
"Your growth potential is REAL and your future SUCCESSES are waiting for YOU...!" : )
Peguis Central School (K-12)- Peguis, MB
Peguis First Nation Education Authority
Day 4 of week 4 and our first visit to Peguis Central School. Today was a pleasant one... Firstly, the conversations and greetings from staff were intriguing and stimulating before presentations started... Also, upon a walk through of the school (especially in the primary and junior sections of the school) it was really impressive to see literally every teacher in their rooms before classes started... some of them, most even... appeared to be premeditating and getting ready for a successful day of teaching... The school was/is very beautiful and only 20 years old and you could feel the vibe of appreciation from the community within their school.. including honoring the history of elders that have focused on protecting the education needs/desires of the community.
The primary students were fantastic with their focus and their voices.... wow all their voices together... Today was one of the best primary sessions from my perspective because of the strong choir like responses from this large group of G 1-4 students. A most sincere and special congratulations to this group of students, staff and EA's for your outstanding efforts/success.
The G 5-12 session was a little bit scattered as G 5-7 ended up missing out due to a scheduling/recess mix-up. This may appear to be a small ripple but a ripple none the less... When the topic of FOCUS is being discussed it is very important that the vibe of FOCUS is alive... This little mix up was hard for me to swallow because many parts of this presentation speak to the entire school community and I'm also mindful that the junior grades are the ones that are likely to benefit the most from these sessions at their stage of learning/development. We did manage to invite them to the second leadership session... however, this required a little bit of backtracking to give them some context before moving forward with everyone else... Overall, everyone managed to get through the couple of focus challenges and it is my observation that this school community really appreciated the message. We look forward to planning another visit to Peguis Central School later this year or perhaps at the beginning of next year to revisit the knowledge and add to the growth potential individuals can experience after having participated in The Canada Goal presentations.
Berens River School - Berens River, MB
Frontier School Division
Day 2 of week 4 - February Focus Month;
We made it to Berens River with the damaged trailer... and it was really refreshing to be welcomed by such a wonderful 'acting principal' who helped us unload after waiting for us until 7:30pm after school... Most often our schedule does not really give us time to check into a hotel so we often will sleep in the school gym after an evening set up... it was a great bonus to have the use of a staff house for the evening to refresh a little bit more fully ; )
The presentations started off great... with an excellent level of focus from both morning sessions;
K-3 - Primary Art Of Focus Session - 60 min
G 4-9 - Junior Art Of Focus Session - 75 min
As we were breaking for lunch we were informed that the school did not have running water so the students would need to be dismissed for the afternoon. We were as surprised as the students/staff and we're going to work on scheduling another visit to the school in the near future. We were also planning a creative school community photo for the end of the session after lunch with the older students/group... where the students would gather in front of their most beautiful BERENS RIVER Welcomes All - logo on the wall with the 2 huskies on either side... These 2 huskies are significant because as soon as we opened the door fro the staff house to go to the school in the morning... these 2 real life northern huskies came barging in with tails wagging and I'd swear they were smiling as much as a dog can smile...!!! WOW what a metaphoric most memorable morning greeting... : )
Both days we were greeted at the school by 'acting principals' whom were very helpful and supportive as the principal was away on a divisional PD initiative. School teachers were also polite and friendly.. including one teacher whom had done her research before we arrived... acknowledging before the session started that she really appreciated what we're doing with The Canada Goal. The school secretary was also very helpful including going above and beyond to have the school maintenance representative look at our damaged trailer. We're very grateful to say that he did an outstanding job finding a solution to repair the suspension to the point we could make it back to home base about 400klm south. Half of that distance being rough gravel roads... once again causing us to slow to speeds of 30-50klm in order to avoid causing more damage to the trailer. When we stopped for gas we noticed the trailer had in fact got worse. but with less than half the trip to go and having reached smooth(er) cement roads, we continued forward. Let's just say we made it back to base and had a deeeeep sleeeeep : )
With a single day off, we were able to reaload and get ready for getting back on the road - 4am departure to Peguis First Nation.
Poplar River School - Poplar River, MB
Poplar River First Nation Education Authority
Day 1 of week 4 and our second visit to Poplar River. Last year we visited to provide entertainment services for their Winter Games... We had the opportunity to meet a few KEY individuals in the school community on our last visit as well as this visit for The Canada Goal presentations. One of those individuals is Raymond... he greeted us with style and class on both of our visits and represents his community like a true member of the leadership team. Raymond is also the one whom initiated our visit this year. Special thanks to YOU for all you're doing to assist Poplar River's community of learning...! Special acknowledgement to Meg - the sidekick with a supportive high vibe that is so important in a healthy school community.
Also on this visit we were very pleased to meet the new principal Patrick! Last year's administrative experience was not as easy to appreciate so (imo) it is very exciting to have this new and refreshed leadership. Patrick brings a caring and assertive vibe to the school with a true desire to bring forward a culture of 'focus' and support a healthy school community.
The level of focus was great with the exception of a couple common focus challenges from the youngest students... one particular student (in the orange sweater - primary session) whom appeared to have quite the difficulty sitting still. After checking with a teacher to make sure there were no exceptional challenges with this student, I decided to engage him and challenge him to find his inner focus/control... This was a good example by the end of the presentation because some individuals will require multiple attempts to gain their trust/willingness to try... I also decided to bring him into the presentation and have him assist with teaching... My respect goes out to all the teachers and assistants that are challenged with the patience it can require to achieve success with some learners/students! Remember the challenge can be described as the foundation for growth... Both for the student and the teacher... ; )
We look forward to continuing to build a relationship with Poplar River First Nation and already looking forward to the next time we get to experience the most wonder-full drive on a snow/winter road. Although, next time we will not bring the trailer as we noticed the suspension started to fail before we left the school. The solution was to drive between 20-40 kLM per hour back on the road to our next scheduled school in Berens River about 100 klm south back down the same winter road. The good news is we got to slow down and enjoy the view... ; )
Otetiskewin Kiskinwamahtowekamik High School
Nisichawayasi Nehetho Culture and Education Authority
Day 15 of week 3 and our second day in Nelson House, MB. This day was a treat... It's always a treat to speak to a high school group due to the enhanced challenge connecting with this age group... However, this day did not present a challenge as the high school students in attendance were respectful and attentive. In remote rural communities of learning there are many unique circumstances that appear to create - both exciting learning/cultural opportunities as well as some challenges for staff and students... Rural and urban communities of learning all have individuals that are subject to traumatic life experiences, less than ideal lifestyle/family routines and learning difficulties for many modern reasons... At the roots of it all - learning can be as much of a challenge as teaching. Therefore the importance for the 'individual' to self-reflect/motivate becomes grater because the other option can only lead to more of the same or worse... In summary, the desire to care for the student and 'self' is alive in this community and it is encouraging to see 'action' toward continuing to grow with success...
A couple highlights from the day; Firstly ANTHONY...!!! Wow, this guy has a HIGH VIBE like nobody's business... I'm sure I speak for many when I say "Thank YOU Tony for contributing to our ability to feel welcomed/comfortable... I have no doubt that you ARE the highlight of the day, most days, for many in your community.
Another highlight was the teacher pie/face fundraiser initiative that took place after the presentations... ; )
Finally, the most honourable highlight, was to be given the gift of the red hoodies... These hoodies have a very important significance... 2 years ago, a valued member of the teaching community (Vice Principal - David MacDonald) did not return after his skidoo fell into the ice. After speaking with both students and staff about this tragedy we learned that David had the ability to motivate staff and students to bring forward their best... With difficulty swallowing... believe his spirit is alive and strong in this community and his impact will not be forgotten......... I know Ian and I will honour these gifts with integrity!
We're looking forward to returning to Nelson House within the next 2 years to revisit, encourage and assist the Art Of Focus as we learn and grow.
NNOC Education Authority- Nelson House (MB)
Otetiskewin School G K-8
Back on schedule today for week 3 day 14 of the Northern Manitoba February FOCUS month tour. Today was our rescheduled date from February 6 when the temperatures of -50 closed the school for the day. Returning this day felt like we were already one step ahead because we had the opportunity to speak/preview the presentations with staff 2 weeks ago... Today we experienced a most wonderful community in ACTION... Starting with the artistry in the school done by the students... outlining the Seven Sacred Teachings (parallel teachings within the Canada Goal) as a focused initiative to bring to the surface the 'roots' of 'self awareness' and capability... This is so important because without being connected to our roots of self and state of being... it appears we're not fully in tune with our being at it's fullest... We could feel a genuine care and concern for the students from staff and leadership in this school and within the culture! The students were also in a mindset of caring as we started our day with a couple of surprise hugs before the presentations even started. The focus level in the sessions today did have a couple of repeat focus challenges mostly in the G4-8 sessions. However, one of the new aspects to the presentation style is to assertively confront the lack of focus in the room with a caring yet serious approach. Starting with calling out the individuals that are not engaging their focus with the rest of the group... at the same time explaining to them that they are not in trouble and we're not getting angr y with them... but rather explaining to them in front of the group as a real example, that the reason we call upon their focus is because we BELIEVE in them... perhaps more than their believing in their-selves at the moment. It appeared to be the same couple of individuals that continued to have this focus challenge throughout... so... we continued to call them out each time explaining that we will not give up on them because we know their FOCUS is in there waiting for them to learn how to control it... How to USE it! The students were encouraged to use this long weekend (no school tomorrow) to STOP - THINK - FOCUS on what we learned today and come back Monday with GOALS for their-selves to engage focus like never before... The majority of the students agreed that this was a goal to take ACTION toward.
Cross Lake Education Authority - Cross Lake (MB)
Mikisew High School (G 9-12)
This day was a success for many reasons...
Firstly, the high school was able to help troubleshoot the date change and allow the presentation a day earlier than planned. As high school schedules can be complicated, we're mindful that this is a success in itself.
Secondly, it appears we have started the process of expanding on a school community 'culture' of 'focus'... Meaning, this school reminded me of my first visit to a similar size high school in northern Manitoba where on our first visit there was an obvious 'focus' challenge for a large group of students where students would gather in the corner or keep their hoodies on with heads down... Then as we continued returning to the school 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 times... the culture of 'focus' becomes stronger with students and staff looking us in the eyes and searching for the best seats for the best view... It is exciting to think about plans to help build expand on a school community with a culture of 'focus' as we learn... all of us... my-self, students, staff and leadership.
Thirdly, the unique conversations/connections with a few students that came forward after the presentations... Calvin McKay - a brilliant deep thought individual whom has the real potential to assist him-self and others in the community with the use of philosophy... assisting individuals to engage deeper thought(s)... Also, another bright and wonder-full student Jordayna Osborne who wanted to know more about how to engage deeper focus if someone has difficulty with it... After a lengthy conversation it was determined that the thoughts of difficulty had come from the opinions of other people outside of the individual that appears to have this challenge. It was determined that the most important 'voice' is the inner-voice... inner-strength... Many people can relate to others telling them they are not capable and never will be... However, your inner-voice would never say that to you directly because the human is truly complex and capable... especially when you believe in your-self...! Goals were set as an action plan to begin engaging focus like never before... It appears this particular student is motivated to make CHANGE... At the end of the day, both Ian and myself were surprised with a most creative quick sketch of us in action... A skill that nobody knew about... Congratulations to YOU for opening up your MIND and heart/self to set free the true inner abilities that were just waiting for you to embrace/command it. NOTE: A close up photo of the sketches will be posted in the comments section below.
Overall, it was a successful first visit and we're excited about the opportunity to return and revisit the art of FOCUS again with both Students and with Staff as a PD initiative. Planning in progress... Look forward to seeing you all again!
PS. We were told that today was the birthday of the 'The King Of The North - Elvis'... Perhaps Haven (female guitar player) you'll be the Princess Of The North one day... motivating the culture/people to be the best they can be..!
Mystery Lake School Division - Thompson (MB)
Burntwood School
Day 10 of week 2 - In the past 2 weeks we have had the real pleasure/honour of presenting to 4 of 6 primary/junior elementary schools in the city of Thompson. To some extent this is a substantial impact for this age group in this specific geographical area... Today Burntwood was the 4th school and another great example of a school with focus ability/potential... There are many things taking place in this school that show the leaders/teachers/assistants already have a premeditated understanding toward the importance of 'self awareness, reflection and accountability'. In particular there is a SELF ASSESSMENT sheet in the gym where students are firstly evaluated by the teachers, then they are encouraged to evaluate each other and finally to evaluate them-selves...! The inner neural network connections that are made from reflections of 'self' can be considered critical for the healthy development of a human being. Congratulations Burntwood on your outstanding efforts within your school community of learning & growth.
Frontier School Division - Cranberry Portage (MB)
Frontier Collegiate
Day 9 of week 2... and our 6th visit to Frontier Collegiate over the past 13 years travelling Canada. Today was extra special for many reasons... Firstly, it was Valentine's Day and The Canada Goal is certainly a self-love experience that fits GREAT on this day! Also, this being our 6th visit to this school, we had the opportunity to honour and show respect to one of the most supportive individuals (resource & support) - Angie Tye...! Angie was one of the first and longest lasting supporters of this initiative. It was fulfilling to share with the entire school my/our appreciation for her efforts that show her sincere desire to provide creative, and impactful experiences for the school/students to help them with learning/development/growth... The bigger picture also establishes she has done the same for me... as an individual with a GOAL... She has believed in me through the years and supported the growth. My most sincere and humble thanks and appreciation Angie...! Honorable mention to:
Jason Gordon - Good Spirit School Division - SK
Theresa Mooney - Prairie South School Division - SK
Troy Wist - Prairie South School Division - SK 'Boomerangs'... This is a part of my daily life/awareness...
It was really rewarding to hear from Frontier Collegiate staff that they noticed substantial growth/changes after our last visit to the school 2 years ago almost to the day... Students recalled the presentation and embraced the message with dignity and class compared to a slight challenge getting everyone settled in the beginning years... This also shows the growth of The Canada Goal. What you FOCUS on will EXPAND. Already looking forward to our next trip back to Cranberry Portage... ; )
Frontier School Division - Moose Lake (MB)
Frontier Mosakahiken School
Day 8, week 2... The theme in the school was 'Share The Love' decorated with hearts in the spirit of love and Valentines Day/Week... and I'm going to say they did a great job at representing that spirit... : ) Today we experienced a couple of challenges... One of them had nothing to do with the school... THE ROAD...!!!!! Trying not to bounce and bump apart we found ourselves cursing at a super safe speed of 20-30KLM per hour... haha! This being our second visit to the school I recall this from the last trip about 8 years ago. To be fair, it was a better so development has taken place ; ) The primary session was a larger group today and that can be a challenge keeping that many fresh little minds focused... but not this group, they/we had a successful session will excellent focus. The second session started with a small group of the younger G 5 students that were not engaging their focus as fast as the rest of the group. It allowed us to create a GOAL early in the session for them to engage this 'focus thing...' we're talking about. After some encouragement they appeared to 'realize' they really did have inner control when they try harder... when they..... FOCUS... Overall, it was a successful day for everyone as they/we move forward toward our next stage(s) of GROWTH. Many students were eager to show their focus skills and talents in between the sessions and it was great to see the artistry that is alive in some of the individuals in the school. One high school student in particular that stood out - and literally stood up for his age group by coming forward to accept the responsibility of putting up the posters on a focus wall in their section of the school to help carry forward what we had learned/reviewed today... A most sincere and wholehearted thank you to YOU...! Then of course there was 'batman' at the end that was fully engaged in focus as he cleaned up the gym. You cold see his thought process as he diligently was one step ahead of his-self ; ) Keep up the top notch focus 'batman'...!
Frontier School Division - Cormorant, MB
Cormorant Lake School
Day 7 of week 2 on the tour... Today this K-10 school was an extra special treat with a really small school.... Small schools have a unique 'vibe' when connection with the students/community... Also school principal Edie reminds me of one of my Aunties... : ) Today we had the opportunities to be creative with the presentation by interlinking them with the culture and inspirational postings/posters already in the school... It was also impressive to speak to G 10 and find that there are thoughts for the GOALS for the future... One of the main GOAL for this initiative is to help kick start the process for the 'individual' to start (or embrace more fully) their inner abilities to think for themselves... To realize that school is the practice ground for setting and achieving GOALS... and at a certain point the 'individual' can begin setting their own GOALS as they get excited about learning FOCUS and belief in their-self will not let them down...
It's also notable to mention the differences in the students daily routines when they don't have public internet access. Internet in the school is restricted for educational purposes. Also there is NOT a mainstream internet provider service in this community. So not one student had a cell phone in use at the school...
Frontier School Division - Snow Lake (MB)
Joseph H Kerr School
Day 6 and week 2 of the tour... and our second visit to Snow Lake. On this day we experienced a most wonderful smaller school community... This K-10 school really showed their best and they focused from beginning to end. Also a special envelope was given to us as we were leaving from the primary Grade 1 class... This was a most wonder-full surprise... To see the G1's using their own individual creativity to make thank you/focus cards... Additionally, there was a letter from Mrs. K the teacher... Thanks Mrs. K... your words and initiative to share your thoughts/feedback hit me deep inside. Thank you!
Frontier School Division - Wabowden (MB)
Mel Johnson School
G 1-4 - Primary - Art Of Focus Session
G 5-12 - Jr/Sr - Art Of Focus Session
G 5-12 - Individual Leadership - Growth & Success
Day 5 of the Northern Manitoba February Focus Month.
This was our second visit to Wabowden... Returning to this particular school brought back some valuable memories from our last trip about 8 years ago. This school inspired me to purchase a greenhouse after observing their school greenhouse program/efforts. It also brought back memories because as we roamed the hallways at lunch hour... we noticed the poster that was left 8 years ago was still up in the same spot... Furthermore, the new posters left from the primary session were already up on a 'focus wall' in their hallway - section of the school. Also some of the senior students noted that they remembered the last visit while they were in elementary... All things considered, it was quite an interesting day for many reasons...
One highlight of the day was a grade one student in the first primary session who was one step ahead right from the beginning with loud, confident answers. Similar to a presentation in Saskatchewan this past September I suggested to this young lady that she should come up and take over the presentation. This time I was not surprised as she took the mic and continued asking a line of questioning that was exactly what we were focusing on at that moment...!!!
The highlights continued with the G 5-12 students as their focus appeared to be deeply engaged from beginning to end... One reason this day felt particularly engaged: One student that required particular care... began wandering right in the middle of the presentation area... Normally, this would have the real potential to distract the students and the level of focus... However it appeared as though not one individual in the room was distracted. Ironically, this also took place when talking about Challenges and how we deal with them... ; )
Thank you Mel Johnson School, students and staff for your most heartwarming and welcoming second visit today. I hope you manage to get that new plastic cover on the greenhouse this spring as a GOAL for the school and community... ; )
Mystery Lake School Division - Thompson (MB)
Ecole Riverside Elementary School
K-3 - Art Of Focus - G4-8 - Art Of Focus - G4-8 - Individual Leadership Session
Day 4 of the NORTHERN MANITOBA FEBRUARY FOCUS MONTH tour.. Today was an outstanding day for FOCUS...! From k-8 you could hear a needle drop at almost every focused teaching/learning moment... Bilingual schools usually appear to have a deeper focus due to the mind being forced to focus learning in 2 languages. You can really feel the 'vibe' of school spirit and a caring community of teachers & students. Today was a success for everyone...!
Mystery Lake School Divisioin - Thompson (MB)
Wapanohk School - K-3 and G 4-8 Sessions
Day 2 of the Northern Manitoba February Focus Month. A refreshing day for 2 reasons... The students showed a strong caring spirit and appreciation for the knowledge that will help them to focus, grow and succeed with their school/life goals. It was also refreshing because there was a slight challenge with focus in one of the sessions. The challenge was refreshing because it helps us to grow. This particular challenge was with one of the younger grades as part of the junior session. There was a group/class that were having their own challenge with focusing and some of them breaking into conversations with each other. I tried many different ways to show them respect while asking them to join the focus level of the rest of the group. With a couple of failed attempts it then became the 'challenge'. As I'm not one to give up easily... We were successful with helping this group to realize they were challenging me as the speaker, their teacher and those in the group that were fully engaged/focused It was clarified that I was not mad or angry with their behaviour but rather that I cared about their ability to be in greater control of their focus. We also clarifies that our focus will not turn on all by itself... We have to command our focus in order for it to work. This was a success and highlight of the day as we all observed this group control their focus for the rest of the day...!
Day 2 of the Northern Manitoba February Focus Month. A refreshing day for 2 reasons... The students showed a strong caring spirit and appreciation for the knowledge that will help them to focus, grow and succeed with their school/life goals. It was also refreshing because there was a slight challenge with focus in one of the sessions. The challenge was refreshing because it helps us to grow. This particular challenge was with one of the younger grades as part of the junior session. There was a group/class that were having their own challenge with focusing and some of them breaking into conversations with each other. I tried many different ways to show them respect while asking them to join the focus level of the rest of the group. With a couple of failed attempts it then became the 'challenge'. As I'm not one to give up easily... We were successful with helping this group to realize they were challenging me as the speaker, their teacher and those in the group that were fully engaged/focused It was clarified that I was not mad or angry with their behaviour but rather that I cared about their ability to be in greater control of their focus. We also clarifies that our focus will not turn on all by itself... We have to command our focus in order for it to work. This was a success and highlight of the day as we all observed this group control their focus for the rest of the day...!
Mystery Lake School Division - Thompson (MB)
Juniper School
K-3 primary - Art Of Focus Session
G 4-8 Junior - Art Of Focus Session
G 4-8 - Individual Leadership Session
Day 1 of the Northern Manitoba February FOCUS Month Tour. A refreshing and even heartwarming start to what is typically the coldest month of the year... The eagerness to learn about focus today from all grades K to 8 was obvious and that helps to bring to the surface how important focus really is in school and as we create goals for our growth. A successful day of learing and growth.
Good Spirit School Division - (SK)
Columbia School - Yorkton SK
K-3 - Primary Art Of Focus Session
G 4-8 - Junior Art Of Focus Session
G 5-8 - Individual Leadership - Growth & Success.
Horizon School Division - (SK)
Raymore School - Raymore, SK
K-4 - Primary Art Of Focus Session
G5-12 - Jr/Sr Art Of Focus Session
G5-12 - Individual Leadership - Growth & Success
Today was one that will remain at the forefront of our memories as the unique circumstances within and surrounding this school community... As part of the Horizon school division, many students were deeply impacted as they had interlinked with individuals from Humboldt... additionally this school was dealing with similar challenges within their own school community before - and then again after Humboldt. 3 substantial challenges within one school year...
The day started with the K-4 primary students who brought forward a truly amazing level of focus and participation... The prompt and to the point answers from eager to learn kindergarten and grade one students shocked and amazed everyone... Answers like "You're not believing in your-self!" "You have to FOCUS...!" At the end of the session we do a 'test' where students are challenged to FOCUS and answer the questions related to what they have just learned/reviewed... One student was yelling out the answers before they came up on the screen... Jokingly we said "WOW, you should come up and teach the rest of the class...!" To everyone's surprise - he did just that... walked up to the front of the screen and willingly took the presenter remote...
The morning continued with a successful first session as we all (students, staff, my-self and Ian) ventured into the delicate process toward ringing to the surface truths related to our inner strengths...
The afternoon session started with the the topic of 'challenges'. Usually it is easier to review knowledge about challenges but today it was a challenge in itself considering the multiple tragedies that this age group/community is in the process of dealing with... We all moved forward together with a delicate approach and at the end of the day we can certainly describe this initiative as successful as it could be at this point in time... At the end of the sessions one student came forward to request a moment to be heard... as his voice was struggling to find the words/energy he mentioned that he was dealing with another tragedy within his own family circle... He continued to explain that he had trouble sleeping as he pointed to his head/eyes... His message at the end was to say - "Thank you - your message is really helping me to deal with all of this..."
It is said that if even ONE individual is able to translate these types of initiatives/presentations into a helpful life experience/lesson - it is successful. We will hope that many others found a similar sense of inner strength to assist them as they/we continue to 'process'...
Today was a roller-coaster of emotions and vibrations... similar to this post ; ) Be well our friends.
Horizon School Division - (SK)
Imperial School - Imperial SK
K-4 - Primary Art Of Focus Session
G 5-12 - Jr/Sr Art Of Focus Session
G 5-12 - Jr/Sr Individual Leadership Session
Prairie Spirit School Division - (SK)
Colonsay School - Colonsay, SK
K-3 - Primary Art Of Focus Session
G 4-12 - Jr/Sr Art Of Focus Session
G 4-12 - Jr/Sr Art Of Focus Session
Prairie Spirit School Division - (SK)
Dundurn School - Dundurn SK
K-2- Primary Art Of Focus Session
3-6- Junior Art Of Focus Session
3-6 - Junior Individual Leadership Session.
Nak'Al Bun Education Society - (BC)
Fort St. James, BC
Primary G 1-3 - Art Of Focus session
Junior - G4-7 - Art Of Focus session
Junior - G4-7 - Individual Leadership session
Sunwest School Division - (SK)
Harris Tessier School - Harris, SK k-6
Bused in to join - D'arcy School K-6
Bused in to join - Rossville School K-6
G K-3 - Primary Art Of Focus Session
Junior - G 4-6 - Art Of Focus Session
Junior - G 4-6 - Individual Leadership Session
Sunwest School Division - (SK)
Loreburn School - Loreburn, SK
Primary G 1-3 Art Of Focus
Junior/Senior - G 4-12 Art Of Focus
Junior/Senior - G 4-12 Individual Leadership
Sunwest School Division - (SK)
Kenaston School - Kenaston SK
Primary - Art Of Focus - G 1-3
Junior - Art Of Focus - G 4-9
Senior - Art Of Focus - G 10-12
Jr/Sr - Individual Leadership - G 4-12
Prairie South School Division - (SK)
Kincaid School - Kincaid, SK
G K-4 - Primary Art Of Focus Session
Junior/Senior - G5-12- Art Of Focus Session
Junior/Senior - G5-12 - Individual Leadership Session
Prairie Valley School Division - (SK)
James Hamblin School - QuAppelle, SK
Pre-K to G 3 - Primary Art Of Focus Session
Junior - G4-8 - Art Of Focus Session
Junior - G 4-8 - Individual Leadership Session
Prairie Valley School Division - (SK)
Broadview School - Boradview Saskatchewan
Primary K-4 - Art Of Focus - 50 min
Jr/Sr G5-12 - Art Of Focus - 75 min
Jr/Sr G 5-12 - Individual Leadership - 60 min
Good Spirit School Division (SK) - Yorkton, SK
Yorkdale Central Schjool - Yorkton SK
Primary k-3 - Art Of Focus
Junior G 4-8 - Art Of Focus
Junior - G 4-8 - Individual Leadership
Good Spirit School Division (SK) - Yorkton, SK
Dr. Brass School - Yorkton, SK
K-3 - Primary - Art Of Focus Session
4-8 - Junior - Art Of Focus Session
4-8 - Individual Leadership Session
Good Spirit School Division (SK) - Grayson, SK
Grayson School - Grayson, Saskatchewan
Primary - Art Of Focus Session k-3
Junior - Art Of Focus Session 4-8
Individual Leadership - Growth & Success 4-8
Rolling River School Division (MB) - Erickson, MB
(7-12) Erickson Collegiate
(7-12) Jr-Sr - Art Of Focus session (75 min)

Turtle River School Division (MB) - Laurier, MB
(K-8) Ecole Laurier School
(K-3) Primary - Art Of Focus session (55 min)
(4-8) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(K-8) Full school - Team Building - Gym Blast
Pine Creek School Division (MB) - Langruth, MB
(K-6) Langruth Elementary School
(K-2) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(3-6) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(3-6) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-6) Full school - Team Building - Gym Blast
Medicint Hat School Division (AB) - Medicint Hat, AB
(K-6) Elm Street School
(K-3) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(3-6) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min) (& Senior students guests)
(3-6) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-6) Full school - Team Building - Gym Blast
Medicine Hat School Division (AB) - Medicine Hat, AB
(K-6) River Heights School
(K-3) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(3-6) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min) (& Senior students guests)
(3-6) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
Horizon School Division (AB) - Enchant, AB
(K-9) Enchant School
(K-3) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(3-9) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min) (& Senior students guests)
(3-9) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-9) Full School - Team Building - Gym Blast
Prairie Rose School Division (AB) - Oyen, AB
(K-8) Oyen Public School
(3-8) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
Southeast Kootenay District 5 (BC) - Fernie, BC
(K-6) Ecole Elizabeth Dicken Elementary School
(K-3) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(3-6) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min) (& Senior students guests)
(3-6) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
Prairie South School Division (SK) - Craik, SK
(K-12) Craik Community School
(K-4) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(5-12) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(5-12) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-12) Team Building - Gym Blast session (60-75 min)

Frontier School Division (MB) - Churchill, MB
(K-12) Duke Of Marlborough School
Day 1 - School community, culture, leadership, action plan & review
Day 2 - Primary, Junior & Senior Art Of Focus, Individual Leadership Growth & Success & Team Building Session

Frontier School Division (MB) - Cranberry Portage, MB
(7-12) Frontier Collegiate
Junior & Senior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)

Good Spirit School Division (SK) - Yorkton, SK
(K-8) Dr. Brass School
(K-3) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(4-8) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(4-8) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-8) Team Building - Gym Blast session (60-75 min)

Good Spirit School Division (SK) - Yorkton, SK
(K-8) MC Knoll School
(K-3) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(4-8) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(4-8) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
Horizon School Division (SK) - Imperial, SK
(K-8) Imperial School
(K-3) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(4-8) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(4-8) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-8) Team Building - Gym Blast session (60-75 min)
Prairie South School Division (SK) - Moose Jaw, SK
(K-8) William Grayson School
(K-3) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(4-8) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
Prairie School Division (SK) - Mossbank, SK
(K-12) Mossbank School
(K-4) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(5-12) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(5-12) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-12) Team Building - Gym Blast session (60-75 min)
Wild Rose School Division (AB) - Winfield, AB
(K-8) Winfield School
(K-3) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(4-8) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(4-8) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-8) Team Building - Gym Blast session (60-75 min)
Okanagan-Shuswap School District #83 (BC) - Armstrong, BC
(K-6) Highland Park Elementary School
(K-3) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(4-6) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(4-6) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-6) Team Building - Gym Blast session (60-75 min)
Okanagan Similkameen School District (BC) - Oliver, BC
(K-6) Oliver Elementary School
(K-3) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(4-6) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(4-6) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
Vernon School District #22 (BC) - Vernon, BC
(9-12) Fulton Secondary School
(9-12) Senior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(9-12) Leadership Team - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(9-12) Leadership Team - Leadership review, Q & A, Action plan
Vernon School District #22 (BC) - Lumby, BC
(9-12) Charles Bloom Secondary School
(9-12) Senior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(9-10) Senior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(9-12) Leadership Team - Leadership review, Q & A, Action plan
Southeast Cornerstone School Division (SK) - Arcola, SK
(K-12) Arcola School
(K-4) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(5-12) Junior & Senior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(5-12) Junior & Senior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-12) Team Building - Gym Blast session
Good Spirit School Division (SK) - Langenburg, SK
(K-6) Langenburg Elementary School
(K-6) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(7-12) Langenburg Secondary School
(7-12) Junior & Senior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(7-12) Junior & Senior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
Southeast Cornerstone School Division (SK) - Midale, SK
(K-12) Midale School
(K-4) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(5-12) Junior & Senior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(9-12) Leadership Team - Leadership review, Q & A
(5-12) Junior & Senior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-12) Team Building - Gym Blast session
Southeast Cornerstone School Division (SK) - Gladmar, SK
(K-12) Gladmar School
(K-4) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(5-12) Junior & Senior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(5-12) Junior & Senior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-12) Team Building - Gym Blast session
Prairie South School Division (SK) - LaFleche, SK
(K-12) LaFleche School
(K-4) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(5-12) Junior & Senior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(5-12) Junior & Senior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-12) Team Building - Gym Blast session
Prairie South School Division (SK) - Central Butte, SK
(K-12) Central Butte School
(K-4) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(5-12) Junior & Senior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(5-12) Junior & Senior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
(K-12) Team Building - Gym Blast session
Horizon School Division (SK) - Wynyard, SK
(K-6) Wynyard Elementary School
(K-3) Primary - Art Of Focus session (50 min)
(4-6) Junior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(4-6) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)
Horizon School Division (SK) - Wynyard, SK
(7-12) Wynyard Secondary School
(7-12) Junior & Senior - Art Of Focus session (75 min)
(7-10) Junior - Individual Leadership Growth & Success session (60 min)

Comments from past events;

Milestone School - Prairie Valley School Division, Milestone, SK
On behalf of the staff and students of Milestone School, I would like to thank you for sharing your passion and commitment to improving the 'self' of so many. I know that your presentation has impacted many today and will undoubtedly have a similar positive impact in-ways unknown in the futures of many...

LaFleche Central School - Prairie South School Division - LaFleche, SK
Andre, On behalf of La Fleche Central we would like to thank you for teaching us about the Art of Focus and encouraging us to have a desire to learn.

Central Butte School - Prairie South School Division, Central Butte, SK
Andre and Ian - Thank you for sharing with us. - "The game of life is a game of boomerangs. Our thoughts, deeds and words return to us sooner or later with astounding accuracy." Florence Scovel Shinn

Seaview Elementary School - Victoria, BC
Thank you Andre for the pictures and of course the presentation. I did get some positive feedback from staff. I know one teacher is using the stop-think-focus in his classroom. Another did a great follow up lesson with students and refers back to it in her classroom. My intermediate staff have talked about how engaging the show was and what a great message it delivered.
I have let some colleagues know about our positive experience and shared the link to your site.
All the best, David Cooper - Principal

Central Elementary School - Chilliwack School District - Chilliwack, BC
Andre & Ian; Thank you very much for a fabulous Friday. You have given our students & staff such encouragement & skills we can use in making this a great year. With appreciation, Leslie Waddington - Principal

Ecole St. Norbert Immersion - Scene River School Division - St. Norbert, MB
It is important to STOP, THINK and FOCUS and for people to believe in themselves to exceed their expectations. It is also important to have 'cheerleaders'; people who believe and empower us! Thank you so much for your positive energy and important inspiring message! The students & staff at ESNI

Yorkton, SK Press
Good Spirit School Division (1 week - 5 schools)
http://www.yorktonthisweek.com/entertainment/local-a-e/speaker-inspires-learning-to-learn-1.1768200

Landmark Collegiate - Hanover School Division - Landmark, MB

Hi Andre, I want to thank you for your kind words. Thanks as well for coming to our school this week. It was a great way to kick off our "Out of the Blue" (Mental Health) week. I liked the message of yuor presentation. It fits wonderfully with growth mindset and I encourage you to read Carol Dweck's book on growth mindset. It is what many educators are talking about now. Your presentation was sincere and informative and relevant. The mixture of videos and personal stories were excellent. Take Care Andre - Greg Sawatzky - Principal

Andre, Thanks for coming to Landmark Collegiate last week. Your presentation was full of great ideas. I like how you started with looking at the brain as a way to show the students that with effort, they could change their neural connections. Your passion for teaching and bettering the lives of young people is clear. Thank you for enriching our students. Barry Dyck - Teacher

Valley View School - Prairie South School Division - MB
At our principals' meeting yesterday, Cory W. shared with the group your presentation and how much we appreciated it and how it was so suitable for all grades and all types of schools. We think the message of respect and focus in the classroom is very important and your delivery of this message certainly caught the students' attention. Thank-you. R.H.Williamson, Principal - Valley View School

Thanks for your kind words, as well as working on the wolf video... I think I will share it at a principals meeting to promote your presentation. I thought you did an excellent job overall, and a really good job of tailoring your message *(making it appropriate for our audience). Thanks again, Corey Willms - Visiting School Principal

Bengough School - Prairie South School Division - Bengough, SK
The K -12 students took back the "focus" concept to their classroom and are often heard telling each other to focus. The grade 3/4 class really internalized what you said and have used it to work on their school goals. Theresa Mooney - Principal

Clear Vista Community School - Weteskiwin, AB
Andre & Gabe, Thank you both for an action packed day. You have given our students much to "think" about and how to become better learners. Hopefully your journeys are trouble free and you are able to spread your talents to many more students! Thanks again, Chris Zarski - Principal

McKitrick Community School - North Battleford, SK
Thank you for your time and energy making this presentation to McKitrick School. Glad you got home safe and sound. I did send out an email to our entire division promoting this initiative so keep your fingers crossed. Thanks again for the great day! Joanne Wing - School Liaison Worker

Adam Robertson School - Creston, BC
You provided an excellent reference point for all students and staff and I am using it with interactions with students to praise them and to correct them and they really do know what we are talking about. Even teachers of the really young students who thought initially it was a bit over their heads have told me that the students are using these reference points. We are all extremely grateful that you took the time to adapt your presentation to the specific context of our school. It really was a fit match. Hoping you travel safe and thank you so much for what you do for all students and schools. Sinecrely, Rod Giles - Principal

Westbrook School - Cochrane, AB
You inspired me to take action, I have decided within the few minutes that I left I was going to start a program to encourage everything you just presented. It will take place at school and hopefully at homes. Thank you! (Feedback box - Auther unknown)

Dr. Hamman School - Taber, AB
Andre, You are awesome! Your message speaks directly to the heart of who we are as a school. You also emphasize the power of deep thinking individuals and the postiveness and good that we can make in our world. Thank you so much Andre! Dr. Hamman school staff and students loved your presentation! Darlene Peckford - Principal

T. Westlake School - Taber, AB
“The Canada Goal presentation featuring Andre Genthon was extremely well received by the students and staff of L. T. Westlake School in Taber, AB. The message presented was directly in line with the goals of our school. The presentation helped students focus in on their own learning and take ownership of it. The lights and music incorporated within the presentation made it a very memorable day for our students” D.Schindeler, Principal L. T. Westlake School

Radville Regional High School - Radville, SK
When I asked for a volunteer last week at the leadership meeting, the sibling of the student that talked to you extensively after volunteered to do the write up. Looks like you reached the whole family! Will Gilmore - Principal
Your presentation was fantastic! I learned a lot about eating healthy food and how to sit down and study. I will really put your presentation to good use to help me study during finals. Great Presentation! Aline - Leadership Student


Albert Community School - Regina, SK
Andre, thanks so much for the wonderful presentations today at Albert Community School! The staff and students were very impressed and enjoyed your message. I appreciate your time, enthusiasm and dedication to help us all learn and become better people in every aspect. Lisa Frei - Principal

Gladys McDonald School - Regina, SK
Andre did an outstanding job at keeping the attention ... focus of all learners. His message connected to our theme of excellence... NO Excuses. Andre allowed us to reflect on our focus. He challenged our students to focus on their best. It was a stellar presentation and already has been impacting how we speak to our students. Cheers, until the next time! Lori Daelick - Principal

New Brigden School - New Brigden, AB
The sessions were really great. The students loved them and thought it was the best thing to hit New Brigden. You and I both know that what you have to say definitely has merits ; ) Thanks for coming to our school. I really appreciated having you! Marcie Reuer - Principal

NATURE VALLEY SCHOOL - Wawanesa, MB
I wanted to give you a bit of feedback from yesterday... James (school director) stopped in after school yesterday and said the kids were buzzing about the day and tried the hand clapping on their parents. (Too cool!!). we have used the "are we focused" a lot .. and the kids will tell each other "will you PLEASE focus!" LOL or I can hear them mumbling "okay .. gotta get focused now" I sure hope I can keep your work fresh in their minds. Thanks again Andre, have an amazing day! Myrna Quigley - Principal

ENCHANT SCHOOL - ENCHANT, AB
Andre, thanks so much for coming to Enchant School. My grade 5/6 students loved your presentation. They were still talking about focus and making good choices this morning! Well done!

RALSTON SCHOOL - RALSTON, AB
To Andre, Thank you for sharing your messages with our students and staff. You are a very engaging speaker and we appreciate having you visit Ralston School.

RIVERS ELEMENTARY - RIVERS, MB
Hi Andre, Students and staff were very appreciative of the presentation. They appreciated your enthusiasm and use of visuals through out! Thank you for being so flexible and doing such a great job!

NUKKO LAKE ELEMENTARY - PRINCE GEORGE, BC
Glad you arrived back home safe and ready to harvest your garden :) The response from students and staff was very positive. 90% of the grade 6/7 said it was worth it. They liked the set-up, message, and thought it was fun, interesting and you were enthusiastic.

KING GEORGE HIGH SCHOOL - VANCOUVER, BC
Subject: RE: day-long presentation tues sept 18 - canada goal at king george
Andre, so glad you made it safely, I was a bit concerned with the two of you driving at night, highway 97 is brutal for animals. As expected the feedback was good, the juniors were most impressed. I think for our school the 8.9,10 grades were our richest targets. The first session and after lunch the seniors really really enjoyed. The school is buzzing and staff/teachers consciously as well as inadvertently weaving your lessons into theirs, so a big thank you, the school culture was definitely impacted in both positive and lasting ways and I will be endorsing the presentation to my counseling and administrative colleagues. Ok keep up the good work, there is lots left to do.

BRASS SCHOOL - YORKTON, SK
Our day was awesome and plenty of great feedback from students, staff and parents. I use stop, think, focus on the golf course everyday. Jason Gordon (Principal)

ADAM ROBERTSON SCHOOL - CRESTON, BC
It was indeed a pleasure to host you and Michael and you did make an impact. We are all talking about STOP THINK and FOCUS throughout our days. Thanks so much to you for feeling the inspiration to do the work you do and doing it so well. Rod Giles (Principal)



Comments from past events prior to 2012;


"I liked that you spoke about focus because we have to focus and think. It is all true. I would rate this presentation 5/5."

"Dear Andre - I liked everything and thank you for the stop, think, and focus because it helped alot and now i'll be better at school. It was very nice meeting you."

"I loved it. It was much better than sitting in class all day. Not saying I don't like school but a change every now and then is always good. You are an awesome speaker!"

"Andre, I thought your presentation was amazing, awesome and AMAZINGLY AWESOME. Hope you come again soon! Tonight I am totally telling my parents!!!"

"On behalf of Bawlf School (AB) we would like to thank you for teaching, inspiring and giving direction for our students. It has been a great day!"

"I learned that your thoughts are important!"

"The mind is very powerful and if it is used properly, you can accomplish great things!"

"I liked how they made it really interesting. How the mind works and how they included all of the students and it was a lot of fun. I learned that I can do anything that I want if I have the right mind set."

"I learned that I can make a difference to others. That I need to stop think and focus on my actions and how they affect others. Great Job! Very positive and a wake-up call for me to discipline myself to look for the good in myself as well as others. Thanks for coming!"

"This reinforced the idea that if you're not part of the solution you're part of the problem. (Wasted time can not be recycled - Excellent!) Please come back soon. Absolutely loved your energetic presentation!"

"You always kept the presentation exciting and fun for all ages. I would suggest more of your son (Michael) as he did a great job leading the kids. I learned it starts with myself and I can really make a difference. Awesome! Great for all ages and it taught us a lot!"

"I learned to look at my life in a whole new way. I learned that acknowledging another person in their time of need is extremely helpful to both yourself and the other person. This presentation was the most amazing one I've ever seen! Great Work!!!"

"It was pretty enjoyable to see how enthusiastic the presenter was and how he kept the kids attention. I learned how important it is to be positive & share the good that is in you with others. Awesome sound, lighting and presentation slides. I could feel the positive energy in the room. This would benefit many school communities."

"It was actually fun learning about the brain. I learned we have 100 billion neurons!"

"I loved all the energy in the air when the presentation was on. I learned that being yourself and believing in yourself is important. Great job! Loved it!"

"I liked best the "energy" you pass on and all the visual / sound. I learned to be good to me. My motto has always been 'look good', 'feel good', 'therefore I am'..."

"This actually brought some participation in the school. Lessons on diet was awesome. I learned that I am awesome too."

"It was inspiring! I learned many things in such little time that will help me for the future. I learned allot about health. Your presentation was great - keep up the hard work!"

"I brought in my Nursery kids as special guests and you kept their attention for the whole hour!"

"I learned it is better to wake-up and decide to be good and to have a good day - than to simply wake-up..."

"It is easier to come to school and want to learn everyday if I care about myself - Thanks Andre!"

Saskatchewan Press Report:
By Delila Jahn-Thue
Gladmar Regional School (GRS K-12) hosted motivational speaker Andre Genthon Sovereign and his "Stop - Think - Focus" presentation of Friday, February 5th. The day-long event was part of The Canada Goal tour, with presentations for elementary and senior students, as well as a school-wide session with a game-show atmosphere.
A former adult job coach, Andre said he realized many years ago that life skills required for success are best learned before individuals reach adulthood. The personal and professional growth over the years had been very rewarding," reflects Andre, who had been refining his focus on life learning, self-awareness, positive attitude and good health in presentations for ten years, while sharing these keys with Canadian children.
Andre led GRS students in song and encouraged them to "focus on music that can do something for you," rather than for example songs with lyrics like, "I've got a hangover."
He also encouraged discernment when it came to deciding which movies to consume as "food for your mind" asking the question," Why would someone ever create something that isn't good for humans?" He went on to describe his own experience with horror movies which he no longer watches. "It's very true for me," said Grade 9 student Kaitlyn Hoffart." If I watch a movie like "The Blind Side" or "Pay It Forward" where there's lots of motivation in the movie, it makes me feel better and makes me want to do more too, rather than watching a movie that has no plot. "I was surprised at how dedicated he was at educating students that they need to focus in order... to learn and succeed, not only in school but the outside world as well," added Hoffart.
Days after the presentation Grade-4 students Emry DeBruyne and Daylee Storle both agreed that what Andre had to say about choosing healthy food, music and movies (In the afternoon Leadership Session) was true for them. "I can focus and get better grades" said Storie. She was also intrigued by the rice experiment to which Andre had referred. Andre presented one of Dr. Mararu Emoto's experiments. Emoto's work with water demonstrates how human intention can change physical reality at the structural level. Andre displayed one of Emoto's rice experiments and encouraged students to try it for themselves. Rice and water in three different jars separately labeled with the intention to be delivered to each, are placed a short distance apart. Each jar is and consistently directed "hate and anger" or "love" or is ignored totally. The results are to be assessed after 30 days. Many have done the experimented and reported their results on YouTube. After the February break, teacher Shawna Hind said Gladmar students will start their own experiment.
DeBruyne said she was surprised by the concept of paying it forward, in which "one kid helped 3 people and they helped three..." She believed it was possible and wanted to participate in that kind of healthy change. The grade 4 students were also still considering the concept of personal control and the importance of keeping positive thoughts, adding; "when we are trying to achieve our goals we need to stay positive."
An individual's conscious choosing of what to consume was frequently referred to n Andre's presentation as "mastering your discipline" - and this, Andre considered key to healthy, focused and purposeful living. "The number one thing your body wants is nutrients," explained Andre, "nutrients come from the ground." He referred to the Blue Zones of the world where humans live healthfully into old age and said those zones share common ground; gardening. Often he said, we feed our bodies with over-processed foods which do not contain nutrients the body requires. Foods containing white sugar, white flour and white salt, he said should be avoided. "White sugar turns off the brain by (up to) 40%," he stated." Get your sweeteners from things that are naturally sweet." He challenged students to make and consume fruit or vegetable smoothies and then pay attention to how their bodies feel afterward. "Focus" was Andre's mantra throughout his performance, which was a fast-paced, media-rich journey through his core beliefs about healthy living.
"Why is it that younger children are the first ones to come up and have fun?" he asked students, reminding older children to be aware of how natural it is to have fun and be happy. He asked them to be role models with fun-loving attitudes and to go out of their way to include and acknowledge younger children "so they feel happy and safe." Finishing the afternoon, Andre said the goal in competition was to "inspire each other." Group exercises required students listen to one another in a focused manner. "What does focus look like?" Andre offered; "If you're talking about anything else, you're not focusing."
Students interviewed agreed that Andre's "Stop, think and focus" message is something they can use in their daily lives. Adding that they enjoyed the fun activities. "Maybe I could do it one day just like him... and we could be partners," Storie suggested. "He had a really good way of explaining things, and he kept the audience listening the entire time." added Hoffart. "his ability to get both kindergartens and Grade 12's listening at the same time was astonishing, because it's hard! "More schools need to get him in the gym educating about how great it is to focus and learn and to succeed," concluded Hoffart.