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Cleo Abram

Student , Columbia University - Columbia College


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We can learn by exchanging and discussing our own lists of "10 Things I Know to be True."

After listening to Sarah Kay's beautiful speech and poetry, I tried to write my own list of "10 Things I know to be True." I learned one thing immediately: I don't know much. I learned a second thing more slowly: that's okay! I tried to distill my limited understanding of the world into this list, without being overly philosophical nor literal.

One thing I know to be true, but that is not on my list, was that Sarah Kay was right when she said that if you share your list with a group of people you will find that someone has one thing very similar, someone else has something totally contrary, another person has something you've never heard of, and still another has something that makes you think further about something you thought you knew.

So let's share ours, and find out! What do your lists have on them?

Here's mine:
1. Fiction can, at times, feel more real than fact.
2. One person, with a good idea, can change our world.
3. There are things about our universe that we will never understand.
4. #3 is not an excuse to stop trying.
5. Everyone has a story worth hearing.
6. There is always another side to the story they tell.
7. Questions can sometimes teach more than their answers.
8. Children can sometimes teach more than their parents.
9. Everyone should travel.
10. No one's truth is universal.


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  • Oct 22 2011: Last spring we used this as a topic for a writing project with teens.
    An amazing topic for getting kids to grow an appreciation for their own thoughts and to feel empowered when they can connect over these things they all find to be true.

    10 things I know to be true:

    1. Picasso was right... all children are artists, the challenge is remaining one.
    2. Art is a beautiful way of life.
    3. Coffee and wine are amazing agents of communication.
    4. People are usually much more brilliant than they actually realize or are willing to admit.
    5. Our lives are a combination of connections.
    6. Life is never about how much you can own, but instead it's about how much joy you found and created.
    (the ancient Egyptians got that one right.)
    7. There are more reasons to smile in life than there are to cry.
    8. Tears are the body's way of clearing out the build up of intense emotion, and ART is the spirit's way of doing the same.
    9. Imagination is made into reality by our actions, therefore, there is NO impossiblity.
    10. The 10th truth is always the hardest one to decide on. :-)

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