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This "Knowledge Is Like A Garden" video is available for download HERE. Since it's embedded in a PDF file all you need is a fairly recent version of Acrobat Reader to view it. This makes it easy to share if you wish and doesn't depend upon any particular video software or operating system. This video vignette features a motto from Guinea in equatorial West Africa -"Knowledge is like a garden: If it is not cultivated it cannot be harvested". Also included as part of this download is a FREE eBook entitled "World Wide Wisdom" containing hundreds of mottos from those clever people around the world who came before us. This ebook covers such topics as Age, Beauty, Birth, Boy, Children, Comedy, Death, Enemy, Evil, Family, Fight, Funny Acts, Girl, God, Home, Joy, Justice, Life, Love, Marriage, Money, Music, Old Age, Power, Education, School, Secrets, Sex, Truth, Women, Men, Work, and Youth. People in faith communities will find these sayings & proverbs a great supplement to their guides to daily living. When you open the downloaded file in Adobe Acrobat, don't forget to double click each page to see its contents. Your host, Binary Mouse, introduces Your Virtual World's Campfire Tales Series in the hosted version. You can also view this video below in our special Virtual
World TV mode.
The "Proverbs President Obama Likes Best" series of videos, to which this video belongs, are meant to dramatize the truth within a given proverb by backing up the message with a broad spectrum of real life people and events without being preachy. The message within our chosen proverbs/mottos is usually self-evident but it's a lot of fun to plug them into situations we may have all widely seen and heard about and it's fun to make the connection.
You can enjoy this video in the language of your choice by activating the language of your choice in the drop down menu above or by copying any dialogue text into the Google Translate window popup just below the video screen. When you use the popup window, after you enter some text, you can also have the text spoken to you by clicking on either of the icons that will speak the words and show example usage of the words
Free Fireside Theater stories are tiny tales usually less than ten minutes long and told by Your Virtual World's animated story tellers. These videos celebrate the ancient worldwide tradition of oral storytelling performed at a time when no batteries were required. They are published and freely available for viewing without cost to the worldwide audience of story listeners. Unlike the Campfire Tale Series of stories, they cannot be personalized or serve as reading exercises for early readers. They are presented back to the world that birthed them in order to share in and preserve the long cultural history enshrined in stories that mankind has collectively created and nourished over many generations on earth.
Hi everybody, welcome. I’m your host, Binary Mouse and we have another truly fantastic story to share with you.
The President often says that although he is our national leader he stands on the shoulders of giants. What you may not know is that he gathers much of his wisdom and guidance from sayings and proverbs of common people throughout the ages and throughout the world. He says that they can guide us all in good times and in bad times.
The wisdom of these common people are often included among the giants upon whose shoulders he stands. Dear friends, let us hear what President Obama has to share with us this evening about the proverb written on the screen behind me.
I know a lot of you are also feeling the strain of some difficult times. You know what's going on in the news and you also know what's going on in some of your own families. You've read about the war in Afghanistan. You hear about the recession that we've been through. And sometimes maybe you're seeing the worries in your parents' faces or sense it in their voice.
So a lot of you as a consequence, because we're going through a tough time a country, are having to act a lot older than you are. You got to be strong for your family while your brother or sister is serving overseas, or you've got to look after younger siblings while your mom is working that second shift. Or maybe some of you who are little bit older, you're taking on a part-time job while your dad's out of work.
And that's a lot to handle. It's more than you should have to handle. And it may make you wonder at times what your own future will look like, whether you're going to be able to succeed in school, whether you should maybe set your sights a little lower, scale back your dreams.
But I came to Masterman to tell all of you what I think you're hearing from your principal and your superintendent, and from your parents and your teachers: Nobody gets to write your destiny but you. Your future is in your hands. Your life is what you make of it. And nothing -- absolutely nothing -- is beyond your reach, so long as you're willing to dream big, so long as you're willing to work hard. So long as you're willing to stay focused on your education, there is not a single thing that any of you cannot accomplish, not a single thing. I believe that.
And that last part is absolutely essential, that part about really working hard in school, because an education has never been more important than it is today. I'm sure there are going to be times in the months ahead when you're staying up late doing your homework or cramming for a test, or you're dragging yourself out of bed on a rainy morning and you're thinking, oh, boy, I wish maybe it was a snow day. (Laughter.)
But let me tell you, what you're doing is worth it. There is nothing more important than what you're doing right now. Nothing is going to have as great an impact on your success in life as your education, how you're doing in school.
More and more, the kinds of opportunities that are open to you are going to be determined by how far you go in school. The farther you go in school, the farther you're going to go in life. And at a time when other countries are competing with us like never before, when students around the world in Beijing, China, or Bangalore, India, are working harder than ever, and doing better than ever, your success in school is not just going to determine your success, it's going to determine America's success in the 21st century.
So you've got an obligation to yourselves, and America has an obligation to you, to make sure you're getting the best education possible. And making sure you get that kind of education is going to take all of us working hard and all of us working hand in hand.
It takes all of us in government -- from the governor to the mayor to the superintendent to the President -- all of us doing our part to prepare our students, all of them, for success in the classroom and in college and in a career. It's going to take an outstanding principal, like Principal Neff, and outstanding teachers like the ones you have here at Masterman -- teachers who are going above and beyond the call of duty for their students. And it's going to take parents who are committed to your education.
Now, that's what we have to do for you. That's our responsibility. That's our job. But you've got a job, too. You've got to show up to school on time. You've got to pay attention in your class. You've got to do your homework. You've got to study for exams. You've got to stay out of trouble. You've got to instill a sense of excellence in everything that you do. That kind of discipline, that kind of drive, that kind of hard work, is absolutely essential for success.
And I can speak from experience here because unlike Kelly, I can't say I always had this discipline. See, I can tell she was always disciplined. I wasn't always disciplined. I wasn't always the best student when I was younger. I made my share of mistakes. I still remember a conversation I had with my mother in high school. I was kind of a goof-off. And I was about the age of some of the folks here. And my grades were slipping. I hadn't started my college applications. I was acting, as my mother put it, sort of casual about my future. I was doing good enough. I was smart enough that I could kind of get by. But I wasn't really applying myself.
And so I suspect this is a conversation that will sound familiar to some students and some parents here today. She decided to sit me down and said I had to change my attitude. My attitude was what I imagine every teenager's attitude is when your parents have a conversation with you like that. I was like, you know, I don't need to hear all this. I'm doing okay, I'm not flunking out.
So I started to say that, and she just cut me right off. She said, you can't just sit around waiting for luck to see you through. She said, you can get into any school you want in the country if you just put in a little bit of effort. She gave me a hard look and she said, you remember what that's like? Effort? (Laughter.) Some of you have had that conversation. (Laughter.) And it was pretty jolting hearing my mother say that.
But eventually her words had the intended effect, because I got serious about my studies. And I started to make an effort in everything that I did. And I began to see my grades and my prospects improve.
And I know that if hard work could make the difference for me, then it can make a difference for all of you. And I know that there may be some people who are skeptical about that. Sometimes you may wonder if some people just aren't better at certain things. You know, well, I'm not good at math or I'm just not really interested in my science classes.
And it is true that we each have our own gifts, we each have our own talents that we have to discover and nurture. Not everybody is going to catch on in certain subjects as easily as others.
But just because you're not the best at something today doesn't mean you can't be tomorrow. Even if you don't think of yourself as a math person or a science person, you can still excel in those subjects if you're willing to make the effort. And you may find out you have talents you never dreamed of.
Because one of the things I've discovered is excelling -- whether it's in school or in life -- isn't mainly about being smarter than everybody else. That's not really the secret to success. It's about working harder than everybody else. So don't avoid new challenges -- seek them out, step out of your comfort zone, don't be afraid to ask for help. Your teachers and family are there to guide you. They want to know if you're not catching on to something because they know that if you keep on working at it, you're going to catch on.
Don't feel discouraged; don't give up if you don't succeed at something the first time. Try again, and learn from your mistakes. Don't feel threatened if your friends are doing well; be proud of them, and see what lessons you can draw from what they're doing right.
Now, I'm sort of preaching to the choir here because I know that's the kind of culture of excellence that you promote at Masterman. But I'm not just speaking to all of you, I'm speaking to kids all across the country. And I want them to all here that same message: That's the kind of excellence we've got to promote in all of America's schools.