Dreaming Big

Photo Note:  This is my niece and nephew, taken a couple of years ago.

We all need a little bit of inspiration every once in a while.  This week I would like to share with you a book that really touches my heart.  I stumbled upon Dallas Clayton’s An Awesome Book while browsing the internet late last winter, and it made me feel so good I bought a copy and sent it to my three- and five-year-old niece and nephew in Oklahoma City.  All you need is five minutes of your time, and you can read the entire thing online, cover-to-cover.  I highly recommend you click the link below, as this blog post does not do the message justice:


Some excerpts:

“Yes, there are places in the world

Where people dream up dreams

So simply un-fantastical

And practical they seem

Instead they dream of furniture

Of buying a new hat

Of owning matching silverware

Could you imagine that?

Yes there are places in the world

Where dreams are almost dead

So please my child do keep in mind

Before you go to bed

To dream a dream as big

As big could ever dream to be

Then dream a dream ten times as big

As that one dream you see

Please dream for those who’ve given up

For those who’ve never tried

Please use your dream to make new dreams

For all the dreams that died

So when you think your dreaming’s done

Just remember what I said

‘Close your eyes my child and dream

That perfect dream inside your head.’”

I get chills every time I read this.

Kids often have a lot to deal with, not only at school, but at home.  It can sometimes be difficult for a young child or teenager to think beyond their immediate situation.  They may feel trapped by circumstances beyond their control.  Many of these students shut down mentally, physically, and emotionally.  When kids close themselves off in these ways, their school life and personal relationships can be negatively affected.

This book reminds me what we need to do and be for children as counselors and educators.  We need to set an example and inspire kids to keep dreaming, think big, never give up, and always strive for the best.  We need to show children that the world is huge and goes beyond the difficulties they may be experiencing.  Kids are resilient, and that quality is what will carry them past the troubles they face.  It is our job to provide an environment that cultivates that resiliency and natural enthusiasm.  Our goal should be to help these students grow into adults that are excited about life, not material objects like “matching silverware” and telephones.  If we take care of ourselves, then our own passions, dreams, and motivations will shine through and help inspire passion and motivation in those children we work with.

Article written by

Kelly Erin Ludovici

Kelly Erin Ludovici is a master’s student at the Warner School in the school and community counseling program. She is from the Syracuse area and graduated in May 2009 from SUNY Geneseo with a B.A. in psychology.

2 Responses

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  1. Angela with tattoos of angels
    Angela with tattoos of angels at |

    Hi, good post. What lucky little children to be so loved and cared for…
    I am from Zimbabwe and what you have written about touches my heart deeply.
    In Zimbabwe today the breakdown of the family unit due to AIDS and the political turmoil cannot be underestimated. Hundreds and thousands of families have been ripped apart, children have been left orphans leaving elderly grandparents to care for them (if the children are lucky!)
    As if that isn’t enough for children to cope with? The government launched its own version of the scorched earth policy. The results have been catastrophic for the economy and most families.
    And who is suffering most during these times? the children. Many are left to fend for themselves if no grandparents can take care of them. They, in turn, get AIDS as they often have to earn a living on the streets (in the case of girls) and the cycle continues.
    These children missed out on all the lessons you talk about. They are the “lost generation” to use an often used term. My concern is how to help these now grown up people who have had nothing but hardship? I don’t know. It’s difficult when corruption and nepotism is rife.
    Thank you for your worthy post.

  2. Amr Boghdady
    Amr Boghdady at |

    Great post Kelly! I thought I was the only one that knew about Clayton!

    I brought this book for my niece for Christmas and took a quick read before wrapping it. It really has a very important message that I love.
    Gratitude’s a great thing. In fact, I think simple acts of gratitude shape us morally, especially children. This book is definitely a great way to teach kids the importance of saying “thank you” for the simple things of life, something adults are prone to forget.

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