Scott Hammell

The Most Important Out Of All.. Imagine two different people doing the same card trick. One person is an amateur, the other, a professional magician.  Imagine that that trick goes wrong. The amateur giggles nervously, apologizes and starts over.  The professional magician, without skipping a beat, continues on with the trick and still manages to fool you.  The reason?  It’s about an idea known among magicians as “Outs”.   “Outs” are contingency plans for magicians.  When learning or constructing a new trick, a magician will try to determine all the possibilities where things can (and probably will) go wrong in the execution of the trick.  Then, the magician can work out realistic possible solutions for each of these possible outcomes.  Time is often dedicated during practice specifically to these “Outs” so that when and if they ever happen, the transition through the mistake is seamless, and the audience isn’t aware […]

Mark Black

The Power of Choices Sara and Paul are in the same calculus class. Last week they wrote mid-terms. Today their teacher is returning the test. Paul turns over this test and sighs. 64%. He’s disappointed but not surprised. Paul has always felt that he wouldn’t do well in calculus. The teacher seems to be speaking a foreign language when teaching, and Paul just couldn’t figure it out. “I’m just not good at this calculus stuff” Paul thinks, “and I never will be.” Sarah slowly flips over her test. Yikes! She got a 64%. Not exactly what she was hoping for! Initially Sarah is very disappointed, but then she stops to think about the week before the test. She had activities after school until late evening four days that week. The fifth day she was sick and missed the class where the teacher had done review and talked about what would […]

Sarah Wells

My Guide to Staying Motivated As a leader, it is often our internal motivation that keeps us driving for success and inspired to help others. But every so often; even leaders could use a little extra help staying motivated, and that’s okay! Everyone struggles with motivation at some point in their lives and as an Olympic athlete, I am certainly not immune to these rough patches in motivation. Over the years I’ve learned a few tricks on how to keep your motivation high and I’ve written 5 simple tips you can try! #1 – Have a Reason… and Write It Down! When you first set a goal, know your reason! Having a sense of purpose will help you battle through the moments when you want to give up, and writing it down will serve as a concrete reminder about your ultimate end goal. As an Olympic athlete my reason only comes every 4 […]

Peter Katz

Lifelines: The Teachings of Teenagers In the first 10 years of my career as a touring singer-songwriter, besides the odd songwriting workshop here and there, I didn’t really have many opportunities to interact with youth. Most of my shows were in bars/clubs/theatres and the audience demographic tended to be mostly adults.   Through a series of serendipitous events however, my songs found their way to the creators of this 12-day program for teens in the mountains of Alberta called F.A.C.E.S. (Facilitating Awareness Through Character Building Experiences for Students) where they take the students hiking, rock-climbing, whitewater canoeing, and rapelling.  The goal of the program is not really for the students to become skilled at those activities, but more so they learn what it’s like to do something they’re afraid of, something they didn’t think they could do, and then through processing, draw parallels between those experiences and their ‘real life’ […]

Alvin Law

Leadership Is Everywhere I Love March Madness! No, not the feeling of anxiety that winter will never end! The competition in NCAA Basketball south of the border. If you didn’t know, it’s a single knock out tournament for Men’s College Hoops that culminates in “The Final Four;” which constitutes the last remaining teams from all the qualifying tournaments across the U.S.A. and results in a National Champion whose team are literally the last ones standing by winning the final game. You don’t even need to like basketball, or sports for that matter, to appreciate what I believe is the essence of this event. Anyone can win! In fact, every single year, a “nobody” school upsets a ranked favourite which literally knocks them out of the competition and they call the underdog’s victory a “Cinderella Story”! I like that! There is a misconception that only the best schools give you the […]

Ian Tyson

Not As Different As You Think As a speaker, working predominantly in the school market for the last 28 years, the question/comment that I get most from teachers, parents, and friends my age is: What is the difference in the issues and struggles facing students today compared to when we were that age? I can certainly see where a question like that comes from… people want to make a connection, and perhaps try to find a way to relate to another generation. At minimum, they want to try and understand, because they seem so different. The thing is, the answer is pretty simple. Students today face a lot of the same issues that “we” faced growing up, the difference is the way in which those issues are presented, and the way they have to deal with them. Technology is the biggest contributing factor to that and plays the largest role […]

Dear Bullies: A video letter by Molly Burke for Bullying Awareness Week

In support of Bullying Awareness Week (Nov. 13 – 19) Molly revisited the feeling and places of the past to write this video letter to the girls that bullied her… Read Article:

Looks from Olympian Sarah Wells’ new athletic wear line

Aired: June 3, 2016 Olympic hurdler Sarah Wells talks about overcoming obstacles on her road to the Olympics and shows us looks from her new athletic wear line. Watch the Video:

Hundreds of students from across Canada come to Calgary for leadership conference

Scott Hammell Centennial High School was teaming with kids for the Alberta Student Leadership Conference, which brought in students from across the country to learn new skills and help others. read article:

‘New Hope’: Alberta students optimistic despite tough times

Scott Hammell They know people who’ve been laid off and they’re facing an uncertain job market themselves. But as Gil Tucker shows us, high school students meeting at a leadership conference in Calgary are ready to tackle the challenges head-on. read article:

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