What is your impact?

This week I’m inspired to write about your impact on family, friends, your community and beyond. As some of you may have noticed my long time fiddle instructor Everett Larson passed away this past week. Here is the link to his obituary: http://thestarphoenix.remembering.ca/obituary/everett-larson-1075546492

For about 8 years my parents drove from our family farm by Marcelin, SK to Saskatoon, SK (about an hour drive) so that I could take fiddle lessons from Mr. Everett Larson. Mr. Larson was a kind, patient teacher who was passionate about music, particularly the accordion and fiddle. He always focused on being precise – every bow stroke and finger pattern mattered! What I admired most about Mr. Larson was his dedication to teaching youth. He was gentle in his approach but yet set high expectations for his students to do well! From a teaching perspective, this simple approach may just be the recipe for high quality teaching. As a result, Mr. Larson’s legacy and impact on the fiddling world is far greater than he would likely ever imagine.

This reflection makes me think about my role as a teacher and what responsibility I have for having an impact on others. Although I have not had much contact with Mr. Larson for the past 15 years, his teachings, his way of life, remains with me.

To my teaching friends, think about what you want your impact to be! Don’t be afraid to ask your students what your impact is – you can only change it if you know what it is.

Lastly, my challenge to all is this – let others know what impact they have on you and thank those that influence you in positive ways! You will strengthen your relationships and walk around “feeling good” that you told them!

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