Martin Luther King Jr. Day Home Learning Activities

Martin Luther King Jr. Day is on January 16th.  On this day we celebrate the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King and his accomplishments in leading the civil rights movement.  He fought to fight racial discrimination. Martin Luther King Jr. Day was not nationally observed by all of the United States until 2000.  Learning opportunities are abundant at home for children to learn about the importance of this holiday and the impact that Dr. Martin Luther King made on society.


Activities for Elementary-aged Children

There are many books recommended for parents to read to or along with their children about Martin Luther King Jr.  Kaboose has a list of great picture books that can help parents to be involved in teaching their children about Martin Luther King Jr., the civil rights movement, and racial equality.  This site also has information about songs, online activities, background information, and family activities.

Education World has activities for children that tie in learning about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with other subject areas.  These activities were intended to be used in the classroom, but can be easily used at home without any adaption.  One activity includes reading a biography of Martin Luther King and then determining what of the material is fact or opinion.  Another activity provides the audio to the “I Have a Dream” speech and then has the child to fill the worksheet with the important phrases of the speech and then provides a basis to have a discussion at home about the speech

This site also has links for other activities created by other websites.  One of these great activities for home use is a crafting activity to make a mobile about dreams for their family, community, country, and world.

Activities for Tweens & Teens

The Seattle Times has an extensive website in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  This site contains a biography, speeches, photo galleries, a timeline of events, links to other resources, and even a study guide that parents can use to help learning with their children on this website.  Parents can use the study guide as discussion questions to spur conversation about the civil rights movements and Dr. King.  Then utilizing this site, especially the photo gallery and other sites, children and parents can work together to research more about historical events that were impacted because of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

The History channel also has many great resources to where families can learn about Martin Luther King Jr. including a short biography, videos, speeches, photo galleries, and interactive activities.  The interactive activity includes a timeline that has pictures, photographs, and historical information about the important milestones in African American History.  Many of these milestones were directly or indirectly impacted by Martin Luther King Jr.  This would be a great website to sit down with your child and review, watch videos, listen to his speech, and use it to spur discussion at home.

Take time this Martin Luther King Jr. Day to spend time learning and reflecting upon the positive impact that he had on America.

Article By Laura Ketcham-VanHellemont

Picture By Mike Licht,

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