Failure is an option…

We often celebrate the flashy successes of human endeavour but behind all the ticker parades is the relentless willingness to fail over and over until a breakthrough occurred. Scientist Robert Goddard, crashed and blew up hundreds of early rockets idea. He ignored public ridicule and frustrated friends and family yet persistence -grit- prevailed. I think we can all celebrate failure as long as we embrace grit as much as glory.

Another step forward for academia would be educators and leaders to nurture the value of reading, including fiction. We assume reference materials make us ‘smart’ but especially with internet databases, it is the reading of fiction that can deliver outcomes like imagination, empathy, and a sense of grit or desire. Goddard again is an example because he began his pursuit of rocket design in his youth after reading HG Wells’ War of the Worlds. , etc. He was an unhealthy frail youngster who fell behind in school yet he became a learned man and inventor. One support in his education path was reading and more reading. The indirect education benefits of reading is an intimate ‘personalized learning’ all educators should include in curricula and classroom practice. Instruction only is not enough.

Read War of the World by HG Wells. The original ‘steampunk’
Or at your local school library

Goddard’s work as both theorist and engineer anticipated many of the developments that were to make spaceflight possible. He has been called the man who ushered in the Space Age…Two of Goddard’s 214 patented inventions — a multi-stage rocket (1914), and a liquid-fuel rocket (1914) — were important milestones toward spaceflight. His 1919 monograph A Method of Reaching Extreme Altitudes is considered one of the classic texts of 20th-century rocket science….
He became interested in space when he read H. G. Wells’ science fiction classic The War of the Worlds when he was 16 years old.[17] His dedication to pursuing space flight became fixed on October 19, 1899. The 17-year-old Goddard climbed a cherry tree to cut off dead limbs. He was transfixed by the sky, and his imagination grew. ….. The young Goddard was a thin and frail boy, almost always in fragile health. He suffered from stomach problems, pleurisy, colds and bronchitis, and fell two years behind his classmates. He became a voracious reader, regularly visiting the local public library to borrow books on the physical sciences…. (Wikipedia)


“H.G. Wells” – Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 19 Nov. 2014.
Copy & Paste View in list Edit

Wells, H. G., and Patrick Parrinder. The War of the Worlds. London, England: Penguin, 2005. Print.

“The War of the Worlds (radio Drama).” – Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 19 Nov. 2014.

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