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Resources to teach about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Author: Dawn Mitchell


Hello everyone!

I hope you and your families are enjoying this day together.  In honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s lifelong work and legacy for social justice and service to others, I want to share some resources that were shared with me by one of my former Furman University induction teachers, Brianna Burnette, who currently teaches at Mary H. Wright Elementary in Spartanburg District 7. 

Last year, she created a special field trip for her students to participate in a Day of Service on Furman’s campus. They spent the morning exploring the life and work of Dr. King and the afternoon serving with various organizations across the community. My children and I joined her in this work and really appreciated the experience. I want to encourage you and your students to consider these possibilities for learning about the work of Dr. King and, most of all, the possibilities that exist all around us for serving others.

Martin Luther King Jr.  I Have a Dream Stencil Watercolor - Students will read and analyze quotes & speeches from MLK and use mimicry to create a poem that reflects his quote or speech. They will also engage in a watercolor activity to go along with their poem.

Martin Luther King Jr. MLK Crayon Box -Read the picture book, The Crayon Box That Talked, to your students. It is about the different colors getting along and liking one other. Then, children draw their portraits on a die-cut crayon pattern. Place all the crayons into a giant box of crayons that you can create using construction paper.

Martin Luther King Jr. Word Collages (Stencil) - Students will cut and paste important quotes from MLK and create a word collage using his stencil.MLK Stencil:

Martin Luther King Jr. Unity Egg Science Observation -This MLK Jr.. egg activity provides a great visual of being different on the outside but the same on the inside.

Martin Luther King Jr. MLK Breakout MLK Breakout Version 2 - Working in groups of three to four, students will engage in a multi-lockbox breakout challenge in order to answer research questions about Dr. King in forty minutes. Students will be able to use children’s books, articles, and newspapers as evidence to support their answers/findings.

Resources for Breakout:


The Lasting Power of Dr. King’s Dream Speech – New York Times

A Letter From Birmingham Jail – Atlantic Monthly -

Dr. King Wins Peace Prize – NY Times Archive Article on Prize


Martin’s Big Words

Who Was Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.?

The Cart that Carried Martin

Happy Birthday Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.!

Martin & Mahalia!

Excellent Resources:



Dawn Mitchell

South Carolina ASCD President



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