Every January, our country celebrates the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. His vision that all people would be treated equally and with respect will forever be a model of true humanitarianism. His hope and dreams were enormous, and he fought to call attention to them. He strove to be a voice for those whose voices were not heard, and he believed in the power of deeds.
In this month of January approaches, why not engage your students in some MLK celebratory activities? Allow your students to experience a little of what MLK stood for and practiced. Below are some innovative and engaging ideas for you to use in your classroom that would combat the winter doldrums and give credence to a man whose ideals and achievements are worthy of being replicated.
- Celebrate diversity! Have students bring in samples of cuisine from their culture for the class to taste..
- Explore acts of humanitarianism. Hold a fundraiser, like a sponsored walk, and donate the money to a local charity..
- Role-play scenarios of injustice in your class. Allow students to decide how they would react in certain situations, building awareness and empathy..
- Discuss values that MLK stood for, like compassion, equality, and freedom. Have students create scenarios that show a particular value..
- Practice volunteerism or service. Discuss this concept with students, brainstorm services they could provide or fulfill in the community, and then let them do it..
- Allow students to listen to MLK’S “I Have a Dream” speech, and then have them write their own speeches. This allows them to think about the needs of our society today and how they can impact its betterment..
- Discuss MLK’S views on non-violence. Have students apply that value to the school, finding ways to encourage all students to not use violence as a way to solve problems.
Explore the many free lessons, resources and videos with themes of community building and inclusion found on: