Well-being Is the Key to All Good Things

Calvin Dossmann is a therapist and specialist teacher

“I feel like an iceberg floating around in a big ocean while melting slowly. The other kids think I’m weird – and that may be the case. But I have a light inside that shines and radiates warmth.” A 12-year-old boy gave this heartbreakingly poignant characterisation of himself to Calvin Dossman.

Calvin had asked the boy to find three Dialoogle picture cards that symbolised how he felt at school, and the boy quickly chose the pictures of an iceberg, an odd blue face with a red tongue and wild eyes, and a lit candle.

“The boy felt like an odd personality and a social outcast, yet still possessed inner strength and self-confidence. My job was to help him find the strength and courage to stay true to his personality, and to cope with it in relation to his surroundings in a constructive manner”, says Calvin.

Calvin Dossmann is a therapist and specialist teacher. In his work he helps children understand their own and others’ feelings and reactions in order to prevent them from being excluded by their classmates and the community in school. He uses his Dialoogle picture cards to promote the well-being of children at all grade levels between one and 10.

In grade five, a group of boys brought their leisure time conflicts into school. As a consequence, the boys were unable to concentrate, made noise and disturbed the other pupils. By using the picture cards, Calvin asked the boys to describe the conflict and how they perceived conflict in general.

“One of the boys chose a picture of an elephant and explained how he wished he was bigger and stronger. The others explained how they bullied their friends in order to avoid being bullied themselves – and how they felt guilty about it.”

The use of picture cards resulted in a dynamic interaction between the boys and helped them understand the conflict.

Abstract concepts like vulnerability, respect, integrity and self-esteem that are crucial to understanding, solving and preventing this kind of conflict, suddenly became understandable and meaningful to them”. Calvin used the picture cards to help the boys clarify their individual needs and what they could do to solve the conflicts and prevent new ones.

“I am very pleased when surprised parents call me and ask what I have done to their children when they realise that their children have changed and are doing noticeably better. The short answer is that we have talked about images.”

Children who thrive make better friends and improve their ability for learning. Adults who thrive are more inventive and productive, better colleagues, friends and partners. Well-being brings out the best in everyone.



90% of the brain’s sensory input comes from visual sources. Images start thought tracks in the brain. If they cross each other in new combinations, new ideas emerge.



Dialoogle picture cards can make it easier to empathise with others and understand their feelings.



With Dialoogle picture cards we can identify and describe our motivation. With the right motivation, we can achieve almost anything.