For me, my folder included the following:
- People: future grandchildren, continued loving relationships, healthy active people, peaceful relationships.
- Places: travel to beautiful places in the world, heartwarming communities, natural beauty
- Things: a big, comfy chair, a simple cottage, and a garden
- Activities: reading, writing, hiking, biking, swimming, travel, adventure
Students approached the project with varying degrees of comfort and interest. The classroom was a buzz of conversation as students discussed what they desired of life. I wanted to start with this activity because I believe it is important that students understand that they can achieve their dreams, and the first step in that action is knowing what your dreams are. I also know that to understand an individual's dreams is an important step with regard to building a knowing, trusting relationship with that person.
During one conversation with a young boy, the child said that he wanted to be rich. I said that he could achieve that dream, and one way to get rich is to study money. I told him the story of a college friend who also had a dream of getting rich, and then achieved that dream with a step-by-step effort that included studying money.
Later teachers in the room helped out by finding pictures in magazines and asking questions such as who would like to be in love someday, who would like to have children someday, who would like to live in ____ someday, who would like to have a garden, travel, play a sport, work in a city, and more.
Today students will have more time to work on these dream folders. Throughout the year we'll revisit this project and students will share this work with family members at upcoming conferences too.
To know your dreams is the first step in achieving those dreams. To help children achieve their dreams, we first have to affirm and acknowledge those dreams, and then give them the needed capacity with regard to knowledge, skill, allies, advocacy, and connections to make their dreams a reality.