In January we honoring a visionary. Find out why we celebrate MLK Day and the impact it continues to have. You can use various age-appropriate methods to teach children about Martin Luther King Jr.
The Significance of MLK Day: Understanding the Importance of Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr.
Read a book about MLK: Reading stories to kids can be a great way for them to learn about King’s life and work. Children’s books, like “My Brother Martin” by Christine King Farris or “I Am Brave: A Little Book about Martin Luther King, Jr.” by Brad Meltzer, that are geared toward readers as young as 2 years old can be thoughtful and educational explainers for little minds. Check out this unit that can be used with MOST ANY MLK books.
I Have a Dream Speech of Martin Luther King
Discuss hopes and dreams: You can talk to your child about King’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech and discuss the importance of having dreams and goals. MLK Research Pennant Project is perfect for school-age children.
What is MLK Day? And why do we celebrate his life? Get kids of every age involved.
Create art: Encourage your child to create art representing King’s message of peace, equality, and justice. For example, they can draw a picture of a world where everyone is treated fairly and respected. Check out this unit for several activities.
Watch age-appropriate videos: Many videos and movies about Martin Luther King Jr. are designed for children. Watching these can help your child understand King’s life and legacy visually. There are so many free videos they can watch (Brainpop Jr, Scholastic, Free School…) and I am sure your media center has a few books on him as well.
Visit relevant sites: Do you live in Georgia? One of our favorite field trips was to the MLK memorial in downtown Atlanta. If possible, visiting relevant sites, such as the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial or the National Civil Rights Museum, will help them understand the historical context of King’s work.