Many school districts recognize Martin Luther King Jr. Day (Jan. 20), giving students a day off of school. And many educators take time out to plan and prepare a curriculum that centers Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. However, parents don’t have to only rely on their child(ren)’s school district to provide lessons regarding the civil rights activist and American icon.
There is a myriad of children and teen books that cover King. Below, take a look at five of them that can assist in teaching youngsters about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Be a King: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Dream and You, by Carole Boston Weatherford and James E. Ransome
Carole Boston Weatherford and James E. Ransome’s book on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. interweaves images that depict pivotal events that transpired in King’s life with illustrations of children carrying out King’s dream. The book does a great job of directly connecting Dr. King’s messages with children.
My Daddy, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., by Martin Luther King III and AG Ford
Written by Martin Luther King III and AG Ford, My Daddy is a memoir from Dr. King’s son, “Marty.” “This book is about my daddy, what it was like to live with him, and how much I loved him,” Martin Luther King III writes.
Let the Children March, by Monica Clark-Robinson and Frank Morrison
Monica Clark-Robinson and Frank Morrison’s book on Dr. King is told from the point of view of a young black girl who hears the civil rights activist speak at her church. She then answers Dr. King’s call for peaceful protestors and joins the 1963 Birmingham Children’s crusade.
My Brother Martin: A Sister Remembers Growing Up With the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., by Christine King Farris and Chris Soentpiet
My Brother Martin: A Sister Remembers Growing Up With the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is centered around Dr. King’s childhood. It details some of the games and jokes that the leader used to play with his siblings.
I Have A Dream, by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Kadir Nelson
I Have A Dream pairs Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s original speeches with stunning paintings. However, the speeches themselves might be too complex for young children to unpack by themselves. The book also includes a CD that includes Dr. King’s speeches.