Dream board at Sewickley Academy meant to inspire students
Sewickley Academy Lower School librarian Sarah Wilson has a dream that her students will be inspired by Martin Luther King Jr. as they celebrate his birthday with a community display in the Marion Hutchins Library hallway.
Lower School students have been learning about King in their history classes and as a cross-curricular connection, it carried over into library class. Each student shared their dream on a piece of paper, a poster, or a note and added it to the board around King's form and the phrase “Martin Luther King had a dream for what the world could be. What is your dream for the world?”
“Children are very perceptive,” Wilson said. “It's heartening to see their purity and generosity.”
Kindergartners worked with Wilson to compile a list of their dreams for the world, including a wish “for everyone to be free.”
Fourth-graders created posters with the hopes that the people of the United States would stop arguing over politics and that everyone will live as family around the world.
The third-graders wrote their dreams for the world on blue paper clouds. As they sat huddled around tables, one student wondered if ending world hunger was an acceptable dream, which Wilson assured was “a beautiful dream.”
In addition to solving world hunger, students hoped for a cure for cancer, a cure for Alzheimer's, an end to pollution, safety and care for animals, to be a doctor for the homeless, and that no child go to bed hungry.
One boy dreamed that all girls will be treated equally with boys and have the same chances, and a girl named Isabella expressed a common thread among her classmates: “My dream is for everyone to respect others' opinions and for everyone to like each other no matter what they look like.”
As the bulletin board overflowed with blue clouds onto the wall around it, so, too, did it spread the candid, innocent dreams of the third grade.
Students, faculty, and staff will continue to write down and post their dreams on the dream board, which will remain up through Black History Month in February as a celebration of the students.
“It's been a hard year for people, and there has been a lot of ugliness following the election,” Wilson said. “Since our students are the future, I thought it was important to have this conversation. It's really beautiful how generous they have been.”
Rebecca L. Ferraro is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.