Legacy Project Homepage
Legacy Project
About the Legacy Project
Community Outreach
Activities and Guides
Books and Products
The Cedars
Sign up now for the Legacy Project e-Newsletter

Find out about the
award-winning bestseller Dream

Legacy Project Homepage
Legacy Project


How can you grow your own Dream Tree?

Dreams take time, work, patience, and care to achieve. You can't expect instant results, you need a strong foundation, and you need a plan with a series of steps. Striving for a dream can be like growing a big, strong tree.

The green pages in Dream, featuring the Dream Tree illustration by two-time Caldecott Medal winners
Leo and Diane Dillon, read:

Dreams grow like seeds.
They need to take root,
then stretch toward the sun.
They grow slowly.
They must be tended to.
And sometimes a gray day
gives them just the rain they need.

What does this mean? How is growing a tree like growing a dream? What do plants need to grow? What do dreams need to grow?

Dream Tree

Students at Mapleton School in Maine were inspired to create their own artistic images of dreams growing like seeds. The sample photo shows the seed as the initial idea, the start of the dream –
in this case, to be a veterinarian. Roots from the seed and the stem of the plan show steps along the way to achieving the dream. The bright red tulip is getting sunlight and water, and there's even a little bee for pollination!

Create your own Dream Tree using a collage effect with different shapes of colored paper cut and stuck onto a large sheet of paper.

Start with the seed: what's your dream or goal for what you'd like to be or do when you get older? Cut your seed from colored paper, write your dream on it, and stick it onto the large sheet of paper. Your seed is planted! Now it's time to get growing.

The first thing a seed grows is roots into the soil. The roots are all the things you need to know and have to grow your dream. They might be things like money so that you can go to college, knowing how to read and write, learning more about the area you're interested in. Make root shapes, stick them onto the sheet so that they're coming off the seed and creating a firm anchor in the soil, and then write words and phrases around the roots to show the things you need to know and have.

Once the roots are established, the seed sprouts upward. Create a tree with a long trunk and a big crown on the top. Along the trunk, write down the steps to achieving your dream. For example, in the sample photo, the student who wants to become a vet writes that she has to spend time with animals, learn how to care for animals at home and at school, spend time watching a real vet do his or her work, and go to college for 4 years.

In the crown of your Dream Tree, write down words and phrases about what your life will be like, the kind of person you'd like to be, and how you'll feel when you achieve your dream.

Decorate the rest of the sheet with other things to help your Dream Tree grow, like a big, bright sun in the corner. Print your name in big, colorful letters somewhere on the sheet.

© SV Bosak, www.legacyproject.org


Large sheet of paper
Crayons, pencil
  crayons, markers,
  glitter glue, other
  art supplies
Colored paper


Schools (art;
  language arts; life
Youth groups