This year our family New Year’s Resolution was to become more civic minded and focus on service in our community. Admittedly, two weeks later, we are off to a slow start. Fortunately, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is an ideal opportunity to regroup, get inspired, and get started. Here is our plan for the day.
- Celebrate with others. To find a local event, I did a quick internet search and located two kid-friendly events.
- The Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration, cosponsored by PPNA and the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board
- I Am, We Are, MLK Day Celebration 2017
- Honor the day through service. My procrastination makes this more difficult so instead of serving, we will take time to research, select and schedule regular service activities. Doing Good Together posts detailed, family-friendly volunteer opportunities that include age requirements for kids.
- We will watch the entire “I Have a Dream Speech.” For my younger kids, I found a few videos that introduce Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr: “The Story of Martin Luther King, Jr. by Kid President” and “Martin Luther King, Jr. Story Read By LeVar Burton.” I also found a good list of books to get us started (which I will check out when the library opens on Tuesday).
- As with all things parenting, I am learning as I go that it’s incredibly important to really talk to kids about everything. I take for granted that many things are obvious or that as a family we feel the same way about things. I also forget that my kids often have fresher ideas and a brighter perspective than me. So our final “to-do” for the day will be to talk about what we learned, to brainstorm how we can help others and how others help us. We will share with each other why it’s important to help and starting with Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., identify role models in our community.
There’s probably so much more we could do, and a whole lot we should have already done, but whether it’s January 1st or 16th, we’re starting, and that’s what is important.