Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s influence on our world is woven throughout the Seven Arrows experience, clearly articulated in our Seven Core Values: Integrity, pursuit of excellence, respect, responsibility, citizenship, empathy, and gratitude. We believe in love, caring about others, having compassion, being kind and accepting of differences, and considerate of the feelings of others. We believe in pursuing the common good and being active, ethical participants in our local and global communities. We believe in respecting ourselves and others, property, and the environment. We believe in being fair and just. We believe in being honest, loyal, ethical, and staying true to our word.

Although Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is only once a year, King’s message of love, tolerance, equality, and justice are worthy of year long attention and constant reinforcement. Here are a few offerings to help us all keep King’s light shining brightly with our families throughout the year.

  • CURRENT EVENTS: When discussing the events of the day with your family, talk about King’s perspective on justice, protesting, and nonviolence. Is disobedience necessary to spark justice? How does the civil rights movement look different today than in King’s era? What kinds of protests successfully changed policy in the past, why did they work, and how can those lessons be applied today?
  • COMMUNITY SERVICE: In 1994, President Bill Clinton signed a law designating Martin Luther King, Jr. Day a national day of service. However, families can make community service a part of their ongoing routines. Engage your family with marginalized communities and talk about the difference between “helping” and “empowering.” Discuss why community service is important for developing tolerance and understanding people who are different than us.
  • THE POWER OF WORDS: Talk to your family about the impact their words can make on others. Reference powerful speeches that have changed history included King’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech. Why were these words so powerful? What responsibility do we hold when we speak? What causes do we want to use our words to inspire others to act on? How can we stay mindful of the power of our words?

For more information and ideas for teaching and learning about Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., read more from The New York Times.