What’s Happening This Week
There is much more to explore in our calendar. Find other important events in literary history, authors' birthdays, and a variety of holidays, each with related lessons and resources.
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In 1929, Martin Luther King, Jr. was born on this day.
|Grades||7 – 12|
|Calendar Activity Type||Historical Figure & Event|
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Martin Luther King, Jr. was born on this day in 1929. Following in his father's and grandfather's footsteps, he was ordained as a minister in 1948. Dr. King became one of the most important leaders of the civil rights movement in the U.S., advocating a nonviolent approach to fighting for equal rights. He received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964. Dr. King was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee, on April 4, 1968.
Listen to a recording of Martin Luther King's I Have a Dream speech and discuss the meaning of his words. This I Have a Dream lesson plan includes numerous discussion questions that can help guide class exploration of the speech.
Once students understand this speech, ask them how they would convey Dr. King's vision and character without using words. To get started, look at these photographs of Dr. King and historical events in which he was involved. What messages are these photographs communicating?
Using the photographs as a model, have students work in groups or as a class to create a mural that depicts their understanding of Dr. King's vision of peace. The One World Mural from Tolerance.Org provides additional models that can help you get your own class mural underway. Once the project is complete, display murals throughout your school to honor Dr. King.
- Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service
On January 21, 2013, people throughout the world will honor the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. Find out how to participate by making this holiday "a day ON, not a day off."
- Martin Luther King, Jr. & the Civil Rights Movement
The Seattle Times provides an extensive collection of resources including articles, transcripts, photos, and information about the holiday in King's honor.
- The Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute
Visitors to this extremely comprehensive site will find a chronology, encyclopedia, biography, videos, lesson plans, and more.
- Citizen King
This PBS American Experience website offers a collection of resources, including information on Dr. King's philosophy of non-violence, video clips, and an interactive map of U.S. Civil Rights hot spots. Also featured is a teacher's guide to the Citizen King documentary.
|Lesson Plans||Student Interactives||Mobile Apps||Other Calendar Activities||Parent & Afterschool Resources|
Grades 3 – 5 | Lesson Plan | Minilesson
Inspired by the book Martin’s Big Words, students explore information on Dr. King to think about his "big" words, then they write about their own "big" words and dreams.
Grades 6 – 8 | Lesson Plan | Minilesson
Students analyze stylistic choices and grammar use in authentic writing, focusing on the use of the semicolon in Martin Luther King Jr.'s "Letter from Birmingham Jail."
Grades 9 – 12 | Lesson Plan | Standard Lesson
Students explore the ways that powerful and passionate words communicate the concepts of freedom, justice, discrimination, and the American Dream in Martin Luther King, Jr.’s "I Have a Dream" speech.
Grades K – 2 | Lesson Plan | Recurring Lesson
This lesson provides the “action piece” for any study of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In this project, students participate in Dr. King’s dream by doing 100 acts of kindness.