On August 28th, 1963, outside the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C., Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his most famous speech. In it he described his hope for improvement in the state of or country, and, perhaps, most importantly, for improvement in the way we treat and consider each other. If you haven't heard the speech in it's entirety, I strongly urge you to take a look. His words still ring true today, and though we may hear them and feel disparity over our lack of progress, we can still listen for his sense of hope, latch onto that, and make it our own.
Sometimes conveying the idea of equality and broaching the subject of segregation with young children in a way that they understand can be tough. But, teaching children to hope for and (better yet) to build for themselves a brighter, more caring community is easy! Even our youngest students are open to sharing hopes and dreams for the future, and they often surprise us with just how aware they truly are as to what's happening in the world around them and what needs to be done to improve it.
So, ask your students what they dream of for the future of our communities and our country, because, after all, it is they who hold it in their hands... And it is our job as teachers to make sure they are well-equipped in knowledge, skills, and self-confidence in order to make their dreams come true.