How to Share the Inauguration of Barack Obama with Your Kids

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Step One
POINT OUT THE LESSON OF EXCELLENCE

Obama was prepared to take sacrifices in order to reach his goals in life. Even though he was the first black editor of the Harvard Law Review, he went on to take the unknown job of community organizer. He could have chosen the easy way out but he chose the road not taken. Teach your children about the path of excellence and the discipline you need to stay on it.

Step Two
POINT OUT THE LESSON OF IDENTITY

Even though he lived with his white grandparents, Obama had issues with his biracial identity. Society has pushed him to a corner, pointing fingers at him and saying that he was not black enough or white enough. The man overcame that struggle. He embraced his two great heritages. Obama is a black and white man; he does not have to answer questions about who he is. Use this to teach your children not to allow society to tell them what they think of themselves.

Step Three
POINT OUT THE LESSON OF CONFIDENCE

From an early age, it was not hard to realize that Obama did not lack confidence in his decision-making. From his decision to become community organizer to the one for president, the man did not listen to those who thought otherwise. You must tell your children that what others think is best does not work, because no one knows you better than yourself. Let this story give you an object lesson to educate your children about confidence.

Step Four
POINT OUT THE LESSON OF POSSIBILITY

The son of a Kenyan man and a Kansas woman? Who thought that was possible? In a country with a history where skin trumped skill, it was easy to accept the status quo wisdom that it could not be done. But Obama did not acquiesce to the threat of failure or the existence of racism. He had a dream and he had to make it come to pass. Children need to know that everything is possible if you are ready to work hard for it.

Step Five
POINT OUT THE LESSON OF DISCIPLINE

Obama’s discipline through his campaign and debates earned him praise from friends and critics. He always preferred to take the high road when the gutter was most appealing. His triumph consolidates the fact that nice guys still win when they stick to the game plan.

Step Six
POINT OUT THE LESSON OF WORKING WITH DIFFERENT PEOPLE

The President-Elect has a history of working with people with differing views. From Harvard to the Hill, he has established faith and friendship with people who do not share his views. This attitude is critical to a nation sharply divided over war and worries over the economy. Your children need to know about the value of being able to gain the respect of your enemies.

Step Seven
POINT OUT THE LESSON OF RESPECT

Respect is a two-way street. You don’t get it if you don’t give it. Obama shows respect to young and old, black and white, rich and poor. His ability to show equal respect to people is something our children have to learn. It is possible to be a respectful person and be the most powerful person in the world. Let this inauguration be a chance to introduce your kids to possibilities that lie ahead for them if they choose to do the right things.

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