We can not deny the potential to create empowered and aligned dreams that is unique to our time and exceptional for humanity.
In an email I’m about to write to the Dream Flag teachers around the world, I’m going to ask them to SIGN UP NOW for making Dream Flags with their students this year.
So why now?
This year, as in most years, I feel that helping our students focus on their dreams, on helping them see the power in aligning them to each other, teaching them this habit of heart and mind, is more important than ever. But especially now. This now.
When I opened my phone this morning, the first story from Google was that the Secretary General of the UN was issuing a “red alert” to world leaders, urging them to resolve to “Narrow the gaps. Bridge the divides. Rebuild trust by bringing people together around common goals.”
And who are those “world leaders?”
I believe they are us, teachers, educators. For who else is more concretely standing in front of or next to, leading and coaching, children in schools around the globe today? Who else is more directly leading the world that will become? Who?
There are about 50 million teachers around the world. And I believe that we are the ones with the power and the responsibility to do this.
When I remember the gathering we had back in 2013, after the first ten years of The Dream Flag Project and looking toward the next ten, the thing that stands out to me the most is the simple question Tony Wagner asked our group. Tony is an educational researcher who has spent his life asking questions about how we can create education that truly prepares our students for tomorrow. At that time, he was working as Expert in Residence at Harvard’s Center for Innovation. He asked us this:
“What habits of mind and heart are you teaching?”
It’s the habit that we must teach, the habit of thinking about what matters most to us as people, the habit of focusing on that and its connection to others. Dreams naturally evolve and change as our students mature, as their perspective and understanding of the world changes, but the habit of focus, the habit of seeing connection to others and the power inherent in that, is what we can and must teach them.
The year ahead is propitious. Why? Because it’s not just that Dream Flags is a tool we can use across cultures to help teach our students to be true to their dreams, but also because so much is lining up around that.
People like Anousheh Ansari and Prodea Systems who are working with Naiim to bridge the digital divide and reach 4.5 billion people, starting in India.
People like Lance Gould and UNLEASH who represent the groundswell of support for making the UN’s SDGs not a dream, but a concrete reality by 2030–and the powerful corporate groups who recognize this as the path to everyone’s prosperity.
People like Dotsub founder Michael Smolens, who sees the deep truth in Nelson Mandela’s statement that “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, it speaks to his head. If you talk to him in his language, it speaks to his heart,” and works tirelessly to transcend language barriers–and to connect dreams.
As Dream Flags evolves, as the capacity of Dreamline to capture and align student and community dreams around the world expands, as we can deliver content and inspiration into the most unserved parts of our global community, the benefit to all of us is immense.
When we look at the already aligned focus we see in children’s dreams around the world –through what Dream Flags has done on a small scale so far — when we see the way that inviting communities to share their dreams opens the heart time and time again, we can not deny the potential to create empowered and aligned dreams that is unique to our time and exceptional for humanity. Here’s how Roxanne Allen, veteran of inner city school change puts it, and I couldn’t agree more.
So now is the time to SIGN UP.