Language is the key

She sets out in search of a better life
From her country of birth to her country of choice
Leaving behind her loved ones and her daily bread
“Do you even know what lies ahead?”
Asks that scared little voice in her head
But on she marches with a hopeful heart and a determined tread

It’s like breathing for the first time, again; her first lungful of Canadian air
A place more vast than she had imagined, more beautiful than she could bear
New language, new culture and a new country
A chance to make a new life, equal and free

But building that life is easier dreamed than done
There are so many doors, just waiting to open
Opportunities at school, at work and in the community
And she realizes with absolute certainty,
Her skill, will, and talent alone will not be enough
To open those doors and make her dream a reality;
Language is the key.

As she embarks on her language learning journey
Her companion and guide are the CLB
The Canadian Language Benchmarks help her see
Where she stands in the continuum of language ability

A clear description of communicative competencies and performance tasks
They are the drawing board for her learning road map
Contextualized through real-life situations and practical applications
They help her create a plan to bridge the language gap
From her hesitant first steps to her confident strides in the last lap

A prism to reveal the spectrum of her everyday language needs
To identify and set meaningful goals, real-world and achievable indeed
To focus on her targets and still wield the big-picture-view
Enabling her to adjust her goals, reflect and begin her efforts anew

Enhancing the newcomer’s communicative language ability
Through task-based, learner-centered instruction
That is the CLB creed
Targeting her weaknesses and celebrating her successes
Developing her skills so she can effectively listen, write, speak and read

Each day that she perseveres and every task in which she succeeds
Takes her a step closer to the life she wants to lead
To enrich Canada’s social, cultural and economic fabric in word and deed

Soon, she will be ready to spread her wings and soar
To reach out and open that door
Proud of how far she has come in her learning journey
In the light of the CLB
Because, language is the key.

Published In:
Contact Spring 2017

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *