Monday, January 18, 2010

Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Today we have been reading and learning about Martin Luther King Jr. I hadn't realized just how tricky it was going to be to explain his importance to my kids. We have friends from all walks of life, and I truly believe that as far as race goes, they don't judge based on it. They notice it, but in the same way they notice hair color, or eye color, or glasses, or curls. It just doesn't matter to them.

So trying to explain that there was a time when people did notice it, and that people were treated differently because of it, and that sometimes it still happens, tricky for them to get their heads around. I also wanted to be careful to explain that it shouldn't matter, that we should treat everyone with kindness and courtesy.

Our study consisted of reading A Picture Book of Martin Luther King, Jr. and My Dream of Martin Luther King and then watching the "I Have a Dream" speech. The speech lost their interest, as I figured it would, but they did sit with me while I watched it. I can't remember ever watching it all the way through.

We'll probably have to watch it again next year. And probably the following year. And the year after that. Eventually they will find it interesting, and be able to understand the vocabulary (which is quite large!) used in the speech. For now, I am content that they have been introduced to the idea and that they asked appropriate questions. The rest of the understanding will follow.

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