Here are a few thoughts from my Summer of Dreams tour.
- I believe in dreams. This started with a dream. I watched an educator speak at a conference and in that moment, 5 years ago, I knew this was something I could do.
- It’s all about timing. Yes, that was my dream to teacher and encourage educators around the nation, but timing is paramount.
- I was fortunate to work with BIE and facilitate several conferences over the summer. The energy at each conference was amazing. Imagine educators from
- all over the world coming to one location and throwing strategies and ideas off each other learning to become better teachers. Now, imagine you are the facilitator and slide from facilitating to being a learner getting new techniques and strategies too. #awesome
- The summer was a busy season indeed. As encouraging and motivational I was on the road for educators all over, when I got home, I was daddy. I learned a great lesson in balancing life and business. My kids still needed quality time, the dishes and laundry still needed to be addressed and my wife (who is the real MVP of our family) still needed her partner.
- It’s one thing to watch the news on television but it’s another thing to experience it. I was right next to the Holy Fire in California. I remember looking outside of my hotel window and seeing the flames on the mountains above, hearing planes and helicopters flying overheard and sirens everywhere. It was a great site to see but sad at the same time.
- One of the coolest moments I remember was speed walking to a classroom for a breakout session and meeting a young lady who heard my keynote. She wanted to shake my hand. As this seasoned teacher grabbed my hand, her first sentence was, “I marched with Martin in DC and your presentation felt just like that.” Instantly, I became the student and slowed down. I wanted to bask in her words. She shared the fear and encouragement of that day, how all walks of life walked together and how there were “mean people saying nasty things to us as we walked.” We had a wonderful moment and in the end she gave me a hug and said, “Sir, please stay woke.” I smiled! (Note: The phrase, #staywoke, was used in this particular keynote.)
- Although it may not look like or feel like it on social media, there are amazing teachers everywhere who truly care for today’s students. They far exceed the ones who do not care… easily an 80:1 ratio.
- I’m forever grateful for the many people who offer advice, provide the listening ears, and continue to rock with me. Althea Gibson stated, “No matter what you accomplish, somebody helped you” and those words are truer today than they were when she stated it.
- Travel and jet lag is a real thing. There were at least ten times my flight was delayed, canceled, moved from a terminal, stalled, etc. I’m glad I got the advice from peers who said, “Andre, let it be. Just let it be.”
- I’ve got a deeper appreciation to the sports and entertainment world who are on the road constantly. They are expected to give 100% to their team/audience no matter what. I’ve taken that same attitude. I’ll continue to give 100% to educators/audiences because I truly love what I do.
- In closing, this has been an amazing Summer of Dreams as my dreams are starting to become true and that makes me happy. Just imagine next summer!
The best is yet to come! #dreamBIG