“All I really need to know I learned in kindergarten.”

The end of August, beginning of September always holds a special place in my heart.  It’s a magical time of rebirth, celebration and the excitement of future adventures.

Firstly, starting on August 17th and running through to September 5th, it contains the birthdays of my wife Suzanne, our daughter Jacqueline, and myself.  A definite time to celebrate and appreciate all that we have.

It also signals the return to school.

And having a spouse (very recently retired) who’s whole career was in the educational sector, as well as our daughter who is into her next level of education (University in Toronto and LA), it signals a very special, emotional response from us all.  A “childlike” excitement of what the future holds.

But more importantly it serves as a cue to myself that there are some very basic teachings we have to remind ourselves of time and time again.  We innately know these lessons, but sometimes we need to revisit them.

In this regard I think Robert Fulghum said it best…

“All I really need to know I learned in kindergarten.”

All I really need to know about how to live and what to do
and how to be I learned in kindergarten.

Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate-school mountain, but there in the
sandpile at Sunday School. These are the things I learned:

Share everything.

Play fair.

Don’t hit people.

Put things back where you found them.

Clean up your own mess.

Don’t take things that aren’t yours.

Say you’re sorry when you hurt somebody.

Wash your hands before you eat.


Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.

Live a balanced life – learn some and think some
and draw and paint and sing and dance and play
and work every day some.

Take a nap every afternoon.

When you go out into the world, watch out for traffic,
hold hands, and stick together.

Be aware of wonder.
Remember the little seed in the styrofoam cup:
The roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody
really knows how or why, but we are all like that.

Goldfish and hamsters and white mice and even
the little seed in the Styrofoam cup – they all die.
So do we.

And then remember the Dick-and-Jane books
and the first word you learned – the biggest
word of all – LOOK.

Everything you need to know is in there somewhere.
The Golden Rule and love and basic sanitation.
Ecology and politics and equality and sane living.

Take any of those items and extrapolate it into
sophisticated adult terms and apply it to your
family life or your work or your government or
your world and it holds true and clear and firm.

Think what a better world it would be if
all – the whole world – had cookies and milk about
three o’clock every afternoon and then lay down with
our blankies for a nap.

Or if all governments had a basic policy to always put thing back where
they found them and to clean up their own mess.

And it is still true, no matter how old you
are – when you go out into the world, it is best
to hold hands and stick together.

(© Robert Fulghum, 1990.  Found in Robert Fulghum, All I Really Need To Know I Learned In Kindergarten, Villard Books: New York, 1990, page 6-7. )

WOW!  Let’s face it – this really says it all.  When we embrace, and put into action, these simple lessons what a magical difference we make in ourselves and the world.

As we move into a new school year please remember the “Magic” that special lessons like these – and more importantly the difference that YOU – can make!  It can be REAL MAGIC!

After all, Real Magic is nothing more than coming up with simple, effective solutions to complicated problems, and then doing something about it!  But Real Magic can happen only when people believe in themselves and are passionate about making a difference in their own life and the lives of others! Have focus! Be passionate about what you do! Create your own real magic!

PS: My BAND TOGETHER – No Bullies Allowed is a great way to reinforce these important messages.  For more information on how this can happen please CLICK HERE.

PPS:  Have a great time in school this year!


Posted in Creativity Insights, Helping Others, Magic, Uncategorized.