Are you looking for some fun and educational ways to learn about Martin Luther King Jr. Day with your kids? I’m sharing some of our favorite activities here and more to choose from! Studying the lives of people is a great way to learn history. But that’s not all! Gather ideas you like into a unit for your homeschool this week and explore activities for Martin Luther King Jr. Day through music, art, literature, and more.
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Read Books About Martin Luther King Jr.
Martin Luther King Jr. was a civil rights activist and leader. A great place to start learning about him and the events of his life is by reading some books together. Here are a few great ones to consider:
- Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by Doreen Rappaport is a picture book we enjoy reading aloud. I originally bought it for a group lesson with our local homeschool support group. It has beautiful illustrations, draws from his speeches, and provides a timeline and list of more books to explore. (You can also find the video read aloud version of the book here.)
- Martin Luther King, Jr.: Young Man with a Dream by Dharathula H. Millender is a great children’s biography from the Childhood of Famous Americans series. This book emphasizes his early years, too.
- Meet Martin Luther King, Jr. by James T. DeKay, another children’s biography. This is part of the Landmark series, which we’ve enjoyed in our homeschool studies.
- A Time to Break Silence: The Essential Works of Martin Luther King, Jr., for Students – This book is a compilation of primary sources, providing many of King’s writings and speeches.
Arts & Craft Activities for Martin Luther King Jr. Day
Arts and crafts are always memorable learning experiences for kids so I try to include them in any units we do around certain people or topics. For Martin Luther King Jr. Day, you could create a family tree, a timeline of life events, compile inspiring quotes onto a poster board, make collages of drawings or clipped images, and more.
Here are some of our favorite arts and crafts Martin Luther King Jr. Day activities to do!
- FREE sample art lesson from You Are an Artist’s chalk pastels lessons on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. We have this membership and love it! If you go to this page and scroll down, you’ll see a place to enter your email and do one of the art lessons for free.
- How To Draw Cartoon Martin Luther King Jr – Free video on youtube from Art Hub for Kids
- Do this fun craft idea! (Pictured above) Two traced and cut out hand prints glued onto a page, and then fun doodle design over the top with sharpie. Then print and cut out some MLK quotes from them to choose from. Inspired by this project from The Craft Train.
Music Lessons for Martin Luther King Jr. Day
One of our favorite homeschool resources is the Music in Our Homeschool courses and membership. I love that they are easy (little or no prep!) and the kids just love them. They often have a free lesson or two available.
Check out their free 15-minute music lesson for Martin Luther King Jr. Day! Includes a free printable as well.
Fun Videos & More Activities for Martin Luther King Jr. Day
Have fun and dig deeper into into Dr. King’s impact and accomplishments! Here are more great ideas and activities for Martin Luther King Jr. Day.
- Rabbit Trails Through Martin Luther King Jr. Day – Brief unit study from Rabbit Trails Homeschool
- FREE 140-page unit study on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. from Only Passionate Curiosity
- FREE Martin Luther King, Jr. Notebooking Pages
- Kid President MLK video – my kids really enjoyed this. 🙂
- Basic info about MLK to read and discuss
- The Civil Rights Lessons & Activities from Thinking Kids – A roundup of books, activities, and more.
- Also try searching your local resources to see if there are any community events you can participate in.
King’s message is as relevant today as it was when he delivered his famous “I have a dream” speech. Enjoy these Martin Luther King Jr. Day activities with your kids! I hope they inspire us all to teach our children about the importance of equality, respect, and compassion.
Please share any other activities or resources that you use for Martin Luther King Jr. Day in the comments below!
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Children’s Literature Unit Study series on Proverbial Homemaker – FREE unit studies and downloads!