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Martin Luther King Day Activities for Kids

Discover fun and meaningful ways to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day with your kids! MLK Day is a national holiday that honors the life and achievements of Dr. King. We’ve listed some kid-friendly activities to learn about this famous civil rights leader and the causes he fought for. January is the perfect time to learn and grow. Kick off this new year by teaching kids about this important history and topics that are also relevant for elementary school such as tolerance, acceptance, and fairness. These lessons and activities about Dr. King may also inspire kids to make the world a better place!

5 Kids’ Activities for MLK Day

Learn about Martin Luther King Jr. and his biography.

First, it’s important to teach kids about who Dr. King was and what he did. He was a civil rights movement leader, organized protests, and opposed segregation. This is a great opportunity to explain segregation—that black people were not given the same opportunities and separated because of the color of their skin. Martin Luther King Jr. also led the Montgomery bus boycott, a nonviolent protest in which protesters didn’t ride the bus for over a year.

Draw a picture of Dr. King.

Once you’ve learned about his biography, it’s time to draw his picture! This coloring activity is a fun way for children to express their creativity.

Make your own “I have a dream” poster.

Help kids make their own poster based on Dr. King’s famous “I have a dream” speech. Outline letters at the top that say I HAVE A DREAM… and then ask the child to finish the sentence, writing out what they believe in. The have the child draw a picture that matches their dream. This MLK Day kids’ activity is one way you can encourage young ones to embrace their passions, dream big, and think of ways to make the world a better place.

Learn important vocabulary with a tracing activity.

Write out words, very large, on white paper. Choose words that fit with the holiday, such as leader, protest, equal, love, peace, and segregation. The child can trace the words one by one on the paper and learn how to spell each vocabulary word. Once they are done tracing, discuss the word’s definition and use current world examples to explain the vocabulary word.

Read inspiring children’s books with your kids.

Children’s books can help illustrate why it’s important to stand up for your beliefs. They can also inspire children to spread love and kindness. One way to create a world of fairness is to inspire young minds to give back and support others. A personalized children’s book is particularly impactful because the child sees themself in the story. Personalized books are both engaging and relatable. A book like I Can Change The World shows that even a small child can make a big impact, by making good choices and performing acts of kindness for others. Storybooks open a child’s mind to possibilities and ideas. Read a handful of inspiring books before bedtime and help your little one grow in confidence and understanding.