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Keepers Of The Flame (Peter & Paul Reynolds) (Canada)
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This animated poem was created by Peter and Paul Reynolds as a tribute to teachers and their vital role in nurturing the learning spirit in every child. We hope it inspires conversation and ideas towards improving our educational system.

Every child is born with a precious flame within.
An inner flame of wonder,
And potential to begin.
This inner light illuminates the path that lies ahead,
Igniting curiosity, keeping passions fed.

But at times this flame is challenged,
From inside and from out.
It can flicker under pressure,
It can be smothered by self-doubt.

Though a child may sometimes stumble,
They are never lost,
For teachers are protecting
That flame at any cost.

Along with caring family,
It’s the teachers who remain
By the side of every learner,
Through life’s joys and sometimes pain.

These keepers of the flame,
Can help and they can guide,
For they share that flame of learning
That burns brightly from inside.

These teachers know a child’s heart.
They value every kind of smart.
Teachers help each child to climb
Higher, further over time.

And own their struggle on their quest
To learn and live what they do best.

Teachers celebrate the triumphs,
And give shelter in the storm.
To keep that guiding light
Steady, bright and warm.

And so, it’s time to shine the light on THEM,
These keepers of the flame.
We thank them for their passion,
And give them high acclaim.

For their knowledge and research,
The science and the art
That allows them to be stewards
Of the mind and of the heart.

To improve our schools – we have a choice
To listen to the teacher’s voice.
Those many voices far and wide
Who protect each student’s flame inside.
With expertise to know what's right
To keep each spirit burning bright.

So let’s listen to our teachers,
As we imagine and design
Schools that keep all flames alight,
And allow EVERY child to shine.

(Written by Paul A. Reynolds)

PRECIOUS= /preʃəs/ Wonderful, valuable, important.

INNER= Which is in the inside, interior.

IGNITING= (literally: setting on fire) provoking, eliciting.

AT TIMES= Sometimes

IS CHALLENGED= Has problems to go on (because of external circumstances).

FLICKER= When a light or flame flickers, it becomes unsteady, fluctuating.

SMOTHERED= Suffocated, extinguished.

STUMBLE= Trip. If you stumble, you are walking and you hit an obstacle so you almost fall down (but not quite).

AT ANY COST= No matter how difficult it is.

ALONG WITH= Together with.

CARING FAMILY= A loving family.

SMART= Intelligence (the word "smart" is usually an adjective meaning "intelligent", but in slang English it can be used as a noun too)

OWN= Possess, share.

STRUGGLE= Efforts, fight.

QUEST= An epic adventure looking for something valuable (for example: the quest for the Holy Grail).

SHELTER= Protection.

HIGH ACCLAIM= Big praise, love and congratulations.

STEWARDS= Waiters; managers; attendants.

FAR AND WIDE= Than can be found everywhere.

ALIGHT= If a flame is alight, it is burning, not dead.

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