Special Features

On Memorial Day

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Photo by MBK (Marjie) via Flickr

Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States for remembering the men and women who have died while in military service. To honor the memory of those who have served and sacrificed, we offer this collection of essays that explore the importance of remembering those who have served their country.

  1. On Memorial Day…
  2. War, Loss, and Remembrance
  3. Thought for Tomorrow
  4. The Ultimate Sacrifice
  5. Reasons to Remember

Mother’s Day

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Photo illustration by Daniel Zanini H. via Flickr

In honor of mothers everywhere, we present these essays about the mother-child relationship. From the simple conversations of everyday life, to the greatest challenges a parent can face, motherhood inspires a wealth of beliefs. Click the links below to explore this sampling.

  1. Some Things To Know About Your Mother
  2. Telling Kids The Whole Truth
  3. There Is No Job More Important Than Parenting
  4. The Guts to Keep Going
  5. Inner Strength from Desperate Times

Quinceañera

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Photo illustration by Crystal Marie Lopez via Flickr

The celebration of quinceañera is a tradition among people of Latin American heritage that marks a 15-year-old girl’s transition from childhood to womanhood. The festivities can include a religious ceremony, elaborate gowns and tuxedoes, a lavish party, and a special dance of the quinceañera and her court. Such a major turning-point in a young girl’s life can evoke a range of emotions and inspire a number of beliefs, as you’ll read in the essays below.

  1. This Is Who I Am
  2. Easy to Forgive, Hard to Forget
  3. The Promise of a Jewelry Box
  4. A Successful Life in America

Neighbors

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Photo illustration by Colin_Eric via Flickr

As many of us are homebound these days, we may feel more connected with our neighbors as we get out to take a walk, or perhaps work in the yard. In conversations over the back fence, helping to celebrate important milestones, and in looking out for one another, neighbors are the building blocks of a community. Click the links below to learn the importance of neighbors to the lives of these essayists.

  1. The Art Of Being A Neighbor
  2. Our Noble, Essential Decency
  3. The True Neighbor
  4. A Piece Of Their Hearts
  5. It Takes A Village

Justice

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Photo illustration by ilkin via Flickr

Most everyone says they’re for justice even if we can’t always agree on what exactly constitutes it. Is justice best defined morally or legally? How much is it rooted in fairness and equity? Who deserves it and who dispenses it? Click the links below to read how these essayists struggled with these questions as they developed their beliefs.

  1. The Real Consequences of Justice
  2. The Greatest of All Virtues
  3. Everyone Deserves Defense
  4. Doing Justice One Person at a Time
  5. One Measure of Justice and Equality

What Students Believe

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Photo illustration via MorgueFile.com

Students all over the world are learning in a new way this spring, with their teachers appearing on their screens instead of in front of the classroom. Many are using This I Believe as a writing exercise, as have tens of thousands of other educators over the past fifteen years since we first introduced our educational curricula. Click the links below to read a sampling of what their students have written.

  1. Thirty Things I Believe
  2. Being Content with Myself
  3. Finding the Flexibility to Survive
  4. The Triumph of Kindness
  5. Find a Good Frog
  6. The Real Me

Finding Strength After Setbacks

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Photo credit: Ray_from_LA via Flickr

We are all of us struggling to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe and sane during this crisis. Some are turning to gardening, long walks, making music, art, or writing. Some are spending their time making useful things for others, such as face masks. The following essayists have found that sometimes significant challenges turn out to be opportunities in disguise.

  1. My Grandmother’s Dicho
  2. Feeding a Hunger
  3. The Strange Blessing That Brought Me Home
  4. Joy Cometh in the Morning
  5. My Father Told Me I Was Fat

Happy With What I Have

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Photo by Brittany Randolph via Flickr

As all of us the world over are homebound, concerned about the future, it can be a good time to contemplate gratitude amid the worry and uncertainty. Click the links below to read how these essayists feel about finding happiness with what they have.

  1. Creating Our Own Happiness
  2. Happy Talk
  3. Make It Do
  4. Just Say No
  5. Happy With What I Have

Voices for Civil Rights

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National Archives photo

A number of prominent African-Americans were featured on Edward R. Murrow’s original This I Believe radio series. Their words helped build momentum for the civil rights movement in the years leading up to the Montgomery bus boycott, lunch-counter sit-ins and the march on Washington. Click the links below to hear their inspiring words.

  1. All or Nothing
  2. The Birthright of Human Dignity
  3. Looking at Life Through Another’s Eyes
  4. God Is the Father of All Men
  5. Free Minds and Hearts at Work
  6. The Courage to Change the Things I Can

I Have a Dream

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Photo courtesy PBS NewsHour

Next Monday, we honor a great man who worked for racial equality and civil rights. To honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., we offer the following essays by people who have been influenced and inspired by Dr. King’s work and words.

  1. Standing Up for What Is Right
  2. The Power of Words
  3. Dr. King’s Dream
  4. This Is Our Mountaintop
  5. Singing the Dream