This post started because I felt a call to read a picture book aboutt Dr. King’s dream. His speech was written and delivered in 1963, when I was 4 years old. I felt a mixture of happy and sad as I reread it. Happy that so much has changed since 1963, and sad because our nation feels so divided on racial lines today.
Part 1 – Martin’s Dream – I can’t recite his speech, but I’m glad I returned the ebook . . . Someone already checked it out.. I went back and listend to my video-reading so I could give you an accurate summary of the details I recorded.
Martin gave this speech on August 28, 1963. He said, paraphrasing, that even though we’re facing difficulties today and tomorrow, that he had a dream that was rooted in the history of our country. He dreamed that we’d rise up and live the words of our creed, that all men are created equal.
Martin had a dream that the sons of Georgia, slave and slave owner could sit down together in brotherhood. That in the sweltering heat of injustice and oppression of 1960 Mississippi, that it could become a place of peace and justice.
Then my favorite part, that his four little kids could grow up in a land where they’re judged by the content of their character, not on the color of their skin. The page I stopped on showed a circle of children, black and white, having fun, and they weren’t thinking about skin color. They were too busy being kids.
I don’t remember the rest of the speech, but there’s a huge section about letting freedom ring, Martin named some of those places . . . from the Atlantic to the Pacific, to the great plains and so many more.
I got an email today, with a quote from Dr. King. I hope it resonates with you . . . “Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. If you’d like to read the quote, and a little bit more about Martin, here’s the link: Daily Inspiration | Inspiring Quotes.
Part 2 – Reaching Out For Your Dreams: One idea is to picture your dreams. What do you want to do? Next imagine the things you can do to make it come true. What steps do you need to take? This is a project I did with my second graders to honor Dr. King. It also helps them envision their dreams. It came from my friend, Rose, and it looks something like this . . . But with a picture of your dream below the clouds.
Here are two models. There are more steps, but it’s a start to get kids thinking. Adults too!
My first dream was to become a teacher . . .
I went to college and studied teaching.
I worked with kids and teachers in my methods classes.
I subbed and found my way into my first job.
Here's a picture of me teaching . . .
My dream now – to find an agent.
First I’ll listen to my critique partners to polish my work.
Next I’ll submit to agents, using their guidelines.
Finally I’ll track my submissions to decide when to move on, and when to send nudges.
PS – I’ll also keep writing new stories.
Here’s me writing . . .
Part 3 – What are Your Dreams . . . And How Can You Reach Them? I shared mine in Part 2. Dreams can change and grow over time. Mine did. What are yours today? I thought back to the days when I was teaching second grade. Here are some of the dreams my students had. I picked the ones that seem to be true all these years later.
My second graders loved sports, from football to dance. You could pick a sport you’re playing now, or one that pops up in the future. The most important thing – that your dream fits you, and what you want out of life.
The next step, how can you grow your skills? Some things are obvious . . . like practice, joining a team, or finding a good coach, but there are many, many more.
You should also think about the things you’re good at. Maybe it’s singing or playing an instrument. Maybe it’s writing or drawing. You can do them for fun, but if you’re really good, it can become your job. Then it will earn you the money for the things you want and need.
How? You have your goal. Now think about how to get there. What do you need? Practice, a teacher, opportunities to play? All of these things can be part of your plan, but there are lots of other ways to make your dreams come true.
Do you like to work with your hands, with real things? You can make a good living, AND you don’t need to go to college, but you still need to figure out how to get there.
Do you need training, to find someplace to practice your skills? One of the best things to do before you invest in training, is to try out/volunteer in places where you can test-drive your dream. Who wants to spend time and money on something you don’t like?!
Have you thought of working in medicine or in outer space? You’ll have to invest more time and money before you can get your first paycheck.
I’d definitely test-drive those jobs before investing either time or money in college. It’s expensive. To figure out your plan, what kinds of things do you need to know, to be able to do, or to study before you can get accepted into that college?
There are so many more hobbies and careers to get involved in. Take your time! Enjoy the journey. Try out the things you’re interested in. That way you’ll know whether you’re a good fit for them, or not. Feel free to use my goals and steps to get there. If they fail or succeed, please let me know! I love finding out when I’ve been helpful.
PS – Don’t be afraid of failing. If you don’t fit, it’s your brain’s way of saying this path isn’t right for you. Would you believe I’ve learned more from my failures than from my successes?! It’s true!
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When I write, I can only have one voice in my head, mine. A little noise is fine. But too much, or worse yet, WORDS, and I must change rooms or pull out headphones. Then I can write on!