"I Show a Child what is Possible" by Jacques d'Amboise.

Essay by donnie08College, UndergraduateA, May 2003

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In writing the essay, "I Show a Child what is Possible", Jacques d'Amboise wanted to explain his passion for the art of dance, and why he loved teaching it. He begins by telling the story of his own childhood, when he was forced to attend his sister's ballet classes. He compliments the ballet teacher as being "very wise", because she captures his interest in ballet by challenging him. D'Amboise's steady attendance to ballet class kept him from the trouble he may have faced if he had been hanging with his friends on the streets. He comments on how many of them were in gangs; and he becomes a professional dancer.

As his professional career ended, Jacques d'Amboise decided he was not ready to completely retire from dancing. He remembered his first dance teacher and how her persistence had helped him when he was a young, impressionable boy. He began the National Dance Institute to help children like himself have the same chances he had.

D'Amboise defines his style of teaching when he describes the beginning of each of his classes. He starts by testing the students, just as his teacher had lured him into the classes. He also says, "Never teach something you don't love and believe in". This is his explanation of the meaning of education. Teaching and learning must be discovered together in an environment capable of housing both. It is the teacher's duty to provide that environment for the student.

I enjoyed the conclusion of Jacques d'Amboise's essay. He presents a metaphor which explains how dedicated he his to teaching. He compares a person to a trunk in the attic. It is up to you what you put in that trunk. If you pollute it, you are polluting the future of children. If you fill it...