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The Milton Measure

The Eight Things We Can’t Remember

by Eshani Chakrabarti on Friday, May 16th, 2014

Jim Thompson emphasizes the importance of focus.

On the evening of Tuesday, May 6th, students were called to the FCC for a mandatory assembly featuring Jim Thompson, who brought his ideas and experiences to the Milton Community.

Mr. Thompson is an author, coach, educator, and business leader who started the Positive Coaching Alliance, an organization that aims to transform the culture of youth sports so that all athletes have a character-building experience.

Thompson discussed with the Milton community the importance of valuing hard work and enjoying oneself instead of only focusing on the end result of winning or losing. At a school as competitive as Milton Academy, Thompson aimed to help students put their goals in perspective and what they could do to appreciate the world around them.

Furthermore, he challenged the assembly to a “memory test,” where students and teachers could see if they could appreciate the ideas being presented before them, Trying not to let these ideas disappear as listeners’ minds drifted to the next topic. Thompson shared eight snippets of advice, which ranged from acting in a sportsmanlike manner to not taking oneself too seriously.

When seven hundred students, including seniors who had just begun senior projects, are asked to listen to a speech on a Tuesday night, there will unavoidably be some criticism. Certainly, students’ reactions to Thompson’s speech were not unanimous. Varsity hockey athlete, Clare Lonergan (IV) enjoyed Thompson’s ideas on sportsmanship, saying, “I’ve been on sports teams my whole life and it was interesting hearing Mr. Thompsons ideas on teamwork and what it’s like to be a team player.” Rick Dionne (II) said, “I thought his message was good and the basis of his advice was sound, but I thought he articulated it poorly and so it came off as patronizing and boring. I got this patronizing vibe from his choice of language: he was speaking from the point of view of a psychologist, but using really simple terms, as if he were speaking to a middle school audience.”

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Posted by Eshani Chakrabarti on May 16 2014. Filed under Featured. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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