Martin Luther King, Jr Worksheets, Books, and Activities
Martin Luther King, Jr Worksheets for first grade that have lessons with books and introduces the Civil Rights Movement
I read a post about how reading books was not enough to change. And while I agree, I do think books are a good start. If you’re not sure how to teach your kids or even what to teach your kids about racism and the civil rights movement of the 1950s, I think this is a good start.
MLK Day is just around the corner and I think it’s so apropros to learn about how we, as a country, got to this point.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr was a great orator. He was a powerful civil rights activist that marched the capital grounds PEACEFULLY. Organizing thousands to come without the power of social media, without text messages or hashtags. He lead people to change laws and make a real difference in the way the country works.
THAT is the kind of change and peace we need at the Capital. Not the coup that happened yesterday.
Who is Martin Luther King, Jr. and Why is He Important?
Being that Dr Martin Luther King, Jr. has been identified as one of the key Civil Rights leaders, it’s important to teach about who he is and how he has been woven into the fabric of this country.
I feel like race and skin color are such important topics to teach about at a young age. Allowing kids to learn about the history of this nation and what it means for them to shape the future is key. To me, teaching diversity and inclusion is the core of who we are as parents and educators. So while we have to tread carefully as we talk about triggers such as death, racism, and violence, we must still do our duty to teach them history.
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Reading Comprehension + Math
This workbook focuses on Martin Luther King through reading comprehension. There is a reading passage that has vocabulary words in bold and short paragraphs for breaks. The comprehension questions that follow are concise and promote re-reading.
While this is really a Social Studies or History lesson, I really wanted to incorporate math learning here. That’s why you’ll find two math worksheets that include art and words. It’s almost like a game for early finishers or homework you can send with them.
Getting Ready to Use the Freebie
- Vocabulary Words + Meanings
- Background + History
- Comprehension Questions
- Timeline Cut + Paste
- Making Choices: Good VS Bad
- I have a Dream Outline
- Math Picture + Problems
- Math Word Puzzle
What Else You’ll Need:
- a printer
- regular paper or card stock or colored paper
- glue stick
- crayons, markers, or coloring pencils
- Self Portrait
How To Use It
To use this workbook, I’d begin with any of the following books on MLK:
Any of these books are great read-alouds to spark an interest for these Martin Luther King worksheets. Below, I have also outlined several videos and additional resources that you can use in the classroom. There is already a reading section included in these worksheets so an additional book as a pre-read is NOT required; it’s just a fun tool to differentiate instruction, especially for the kinesthetic learners.
As aforementioned, there are vocabulary words highlighted with a before reading and after reading option. This allows them to predict the text and then later, use context clues to understand the meanings.
The “I Have a Dream” page does require them to bring in a picture of themselves. If they don’t have one, I suggest just having them use this opportunity to draw it in. For me, that would mean drawing stick figures and that’s totally okay.
I did include two math activities here and you can use it to differentiate it in that class. One is harder that the other. It has a lot more reading, it has multiple steps, and it requires more assessment of numbers. You can do this as a class as a whole, or leave it for early finishers. I did try to do this at home once and it was wildly unsuccessful because it’s not an independent activity unless they have mastered greater than/less than, and odd/even numbers.
The second math activity, though, is super fun and spells out a secret code!
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