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15+ Ideas for Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day With Your Kids

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Martin Luther King Jr. Day always creeps up on me. After the frenzy of Christmas, this important commemorative holiday goes unnoticed at my house.

I have vowed to make this year different.

Of course, the most obvious way to salute the legacy of Martin Luther King is at the annual MLK Day Marade. The combination march-and-parade starts at City Park (2100 Steele Street), where walkers will assemble on Monday, January 20, 2014 at 9 a.m. Go here for more information.

If you want to stay closer to home, I have compiled a list of easy activities and crafts you can do with your children.

*In honor of the gifts Dr. King gave our nation, try these five creative ways to help children celebrate his vision of hope and sense of humanity. They include creating a multicultural banquet, decorations, “walking the walk” and visiting a different house of worship.
*This is a simple look at how we can look different on the outside, yet be the same on the inside. Designed for preschoolers.

*Being Treated Equally. This is a powerful way to really drive the message of equality home. Designed for kindergartens, but easily adaptable to all ages.

*One of Martin Luther King’s greatest achievements was his ability to help Americans appreciate diversity. Celebrate his birthday with an eclectic holiday dinner featuring cuisine from different countries or geographical regions.

*Celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day by learning facts about Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, his life, and his career and accomplishments as a civil rights leader.
*These Martin Luther King Jr. Day crafts can be used to teach children about other colors and cultures, and discuss the principals that Dr Martin Luther King Jr stood for.

*Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Coloring Pages. Get out your interactive crayon and color some of these famous Americans in history, including Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

*Check out children’s drawings that illustrate the milestone moments in MKLJ’s life.

*Friends come in all colors and sizes! Teach kids about diversity and freedom with these cute little Freedom Friends puppets.

*How much do you know about the young Martin Luther King Jr.? Test your knowledge with this informative quiz.

*Volunteer. On Saturday, Jan. 18 from 10 a.m.-11:30 a.m., family volunteers will be helping prepare for Volunteers of America’s 29th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Dinner! This dinner feeds 1,700 homeless men, women and children at Sunset Park Senior Center, 1865 Larimer Street, Denver, CO. Kids of all ages are welcome and age-appropriate activities will include decorating placemats, assembling silverware sets, preparing hygiene kits and sorting gently used donated clothing from ARC Thrift Stores. Be sure to signup here:

What are some of your ideas for celebrating the holiday?

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  • comment avatar Heather January 20, 2013

    If explaining the civil rights movement to a preschooler seems a little daunting, Elmer by David McKay is a great book to use! We talk about it here.

  • comment avatar Terry Bell January 13, 2014

    I think MLK was a great man for his race, a great man. But if you look around at what we have today coming from the black race, I think MLK would be very unhappy with his people, I don’t believe this is what he saw in the future.

  • comment avatar Ann January 13, 2014

    I need to do a better job celebrating the holiday with my kids. Good suggestions.

  • comment avatar lilyrose January 17, 2014

    i need some ideas for a family night celebrations fo rmlk day at a school some projects

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