Martin Luther King Jr. Day

I've worried somewhat in the past about what kind of history lessons my kids are getting.  I'm more hit and miss with that subject than I'd like to be in our little homeschool world.  Then I was thinking about all the holidays I "celebrate" with my children and just how many of them are historically based.  Today is one example.  Other historical days this month (which we may or may not have celebrated, but it's good to know):  George Washington Carver's birthday (science or history), Roe vs. Wade,  and Robert E. Lee day.

Last year I found what is now my very favorite Civil Rights book.  It's called, A Taste of Colored Water.  It's a beautiful story of two children wanting to go into town because they've heard about a "colored water" drinking fountain and imagine all the brilliant colors and tastes that would come from such a fountain.  Little do they know what those words truly mean and find themselves in the middle of a Civil Rights demonstration.  One of the most touching books of the time that I have read.  Seriously.

One thing I love to do on this day is, of course, listen to Martin Luther King Jr.'s speech, "I Have a Dream."  After discussing this with the kids I then have them create their own dream.  The younger children draw pictures.  This year I think I'll have the older kids present actual speeches at the dinner table tonight. 

Another thing I'd like to try this year is having the kids call their grandparents to ask what they remember of the events surrounding the Civil Rights movement.

I've been thinking a lot about this idea, actually, the idea of how things we see as "Set in stone" were not the case years ago.  Even in our parents' generation.  It's so easy to get comfortable and sometimes complacent about the issues of the day.  The world is changing.  Sometimes it's scary to think about.  But mostly it just makes me wonder,"Am I ready to fight for or against the changes?" 

Martin Luther King, Jr. saw that need and developed the strength to persevere through the challenges that came with what he knew he needed to do.   Would I be ready to do the same if called upon?  Will my children be ready to do likewise?  Deep thoughts on this Monday morning. 


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