This year Martin Luther King Day takes place on Monday 16th January, 2023.
Martin Luther King Day is celebrated every year on the third Monday of January - which is generally close to his birthday, January 15th.
Martin Luther King falls into the History books usually for 5th/6th class but is an extremely interesting character from history for children in other class groups to learn about too. Funnily enough, I even recall seeing MLK listed as a learning topic in my son's creche in January, 2020 - realistically, we are never too young to explore civil rights, diversity and inclusion.
Regardless of the age group, studying the life and legacy of Martin Luther King is an entry point into many great opportunities for meaningful writing instruction, discussion and dialogue, class projects, stories, artwork - through all curricular areas - endless possibilities!
Yourself or a colleague might find my MLK resource pack useful. Feel free to download, share and circulate.
Download my free MLK resource pack for Senior Primary Classroom (4th - 6th):
Informative reading passage
'Making the world a better place' activity
Recipe for Peace activity (sample plus two differentiated activity pages)
'I have a dream' - Visualising Task
'My Dreams for the future' activity
Additional MLK teaching ideas:
Martin Luther King's timeless and powerful speeches are one of the most brilliant examples of expositions - extremely useful if you're doing work on the genre of expositions for literacy.
What's an exposition again?!
An exposition is the critical evaluation of ideas involving argument, persuasion, or debate. The purpose of an exposition is to develop an idea and supporting details in order to present a logical argument from a particular point of view.
The main focus of expositions is logical reasoning.
Silhouette Word Collages
Grab the brochures and the magazines lying around after the holidays and invite the children to choose a careful selection of words or letters to create some silhouette word collages. Example below from Funky in Fourth via Pinterest.
Inside the head of a leader
This time a chance to play with the silhouettes of the class. Invite the children to share an insight into the head of a leader and what attributes or terms they may associate with leaders. Example below from Joy in the Journey.
Poetry: The Crayon Box
The Crayon Box, a fabulous, thought-provoking poem. Image below from The Bubbly Blonde Teacher.
Collaborative PopArt was something I was always drawn to as a teacher. I love this example of MLK PopArt from Apex Elementary Art. One you could try with small groups or the whole class.
"If Martin Luther King Jr. had Instagram"
This example is from 6th Grade Tales. Download a free Instagram post template for this and other creative activities which tap into the social media / microblogging response themes.
If you find any of the resources or suggestions useful, be sure to share!
This post is an updated version of a blog post first shared in January, 2020.