Monday, January 16, 2012

"I Have a Dream!" [Linky Connection]

Gator Run, FL signing: I Love YOU!
Years and years ago, long before I would ever envision the concept of blogging, I had an invitation to River Rouge, Michigan. It was an amazing day in every respect. The director of the center had written a grant for my performance. I have no photo of the story I will attempt to weave.

River Rouge is at the bottom of the American Dream. It is 'below' the lowest entry point of the American dream. To say that the area is one of vast decline is an understatement extreme. I will remember forever singing to the hundreds and hundreds of children brought to the center for our time of interaction and joy.
It was a melting pot for every minority looking for a beginning.

As is my usual habit, I concluded our time together by singing my anthem of self-esteem, "You're Wonderful." The lyrics of which conclude: 'and dreams.' The very child immediately in front of me bellowed out, "I HAVE A DREAM!" It was one of those occasions when time stands still for a few heart-beats so that you can gather your thoughts sufficiently to record the moment forever in your heart.

This young girl, hair lovingly braided with colorful beads and bright baubles into a magnificent pattern of love, looked straight in my heart and said it, "I HAVE A DREAM!" At the time I thought, Dr. Martin would be so proud, so relieved. So relieved to know that you have hopes and visions and dreams beyond this immediate crime-riddled, decaying setting. Kindle those dreams and care for them sweetheart. Dream large and vast dreams.

So jump back to the current day. Exactly one week ago I was the guest in Weston, FL -- a world away from River Rouge, a universe away. Yet I'm still singing the same anthem of self esteem. Look at the amazing gift I was given by my mature kindergarten friends on this occasion. These dream catchers were woven with care and exhuberance.


We owe it to every child from River Rouge to Weston to dream big dreams.... to give the very best to every child.



These dream catchers were the amazing creations of Caitlin Clabby's Kindergarten children. Caitlin also keeps a blog of their adventures together and her inspirations for children over here at Kindergarten Smiles. She has all sorts of ideas to share. Aren't these absolutely amazing? I LUV each and everyone!!!!



That's Caitlin on the left, helping to lead all of those kindergartners in learning my newest picture book, "Red, White and Blue." I am showing everyone how to sign the word for 'flag.' We are a couple verses into the song.



Looking in their hallways after we were all done, these were the images outside of the Art-room.


I think that these might have been an assignment to create a 'bumper sticker' for MLK day.


I've been looking around the web for ideas for teachers to help with these HUGE lessons -- especially for little ones. My favorite 'pin' is the one that has been re-pinned a gazillion times I'm sure. The one with the eggs on the plate. White egg shells. Brown egg shells. Cracked open???? ALL the same! Simple? Yes. Very simple? YES!!!! I think simple works with little ones.

-- Debbie -- 

What ideas do you have? I just decided that this is the critically important type of 'lesson' that needs all of us working together. Yup. You guessed it. LINKIE party!!! Let's have a catalogue of LOTS of ideas. Lots of ages -- even. If you have a blog post that is specific to the ideas of Martin Luther King, Jr. -- either to his work specifically, or to the concepts of teaching diversity and acceptance, please link them here..... the only stipulation is to to into your post (new or old) and add a shout-out to this URL, to help circulate your ideas with the other. Thanks for following thru.

I've added this post to the Thrifty-Thursday link-up over at Playing with Words 365. I've also added it to Toys in the Dryer's link-up. It's over at Link&Learn on No Time for Flashcards.

Very much later I am adding this post to Denise in Sunny Days blog hop in honor of her blog's birthday!!! Hop on over to get other birthday ideas. These dream catchers resulted from Dr. Martin Luther King's birthday.

Thanks for your support! I am so appreciative of your pins!

Thanks for your support! I am so appreciative of your pins!
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