January and February are PACKED with so many important days – New Years, MLK Day, 100th Day, Valentine’s Day, and President’s Day. Although there are so many special days, I do prioritize Martin Luther King Day during this busy season. Students love spending time learning about Martin’s life, and other African Americans positively impacting how we interact with one another.
Favorite Texts About Change the World
How can we change and impact the world around us? During our learning, we focus on a variety of options. Every person has special talents that can be leveraged to make our world better.
- Using Our Voices: Voice of Freedom, Say Something, No Voice Too Small
- With our Actions: The Man Who Built a Library, Let the Children March, This Is Your Time, Sometimes People March
- Sharing our Dreams: Martin’s Big Words, Mae Jemison: A Kid’s Guide to Reaching Your Dreams,
Starting out our unit with BrainPop Jr.’s free MLK video gives up a general overview and something to really dig into. Many of our 1st graders have never heard of Dr. King, so it’s the perfect introduction.
Since our theme time is so limited in the afternoon, I worked hard to integrate our social studies and science units into our core reading time. Through Scholastic Reading Club, I have guided reading sets of Martin Luther King Jr. from National Geographic Kids and Let’s Dream, Martin Luther King. These are books that work really well for my above-grade level 1st graders so they would be just-right for grade level 2nd graders.
Ways Dr. Martin Luther King Changed the World
Using a variety of books, we explore different ways to change the world. From marching to preaching to writing to inventing – we can make the world a better place doing a lot of different things.
During small groups, we also pull out of Scholastic News Magazines. I laminate these magazines each year, so my future classes can use them. This is the first magazine of the year that is written in a two-column format and my 1st graders feel like ‘real’ readers when they read this!
Writing About Our Learning
Sharing How We Can Impact the World
After learning all about Martin Luther King Jr. and his dream, we love brainstorming our dreams for the world. These dreams make a perfect hallway display and a sweet writing piece for our 1st grade portfolio.
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