How to Honor Martin Luther King, Jr. Day with Your Kids
These 4 easy MLK Day activities for kids will help your family learn about and honor the impact Martin Luther King, Jr. had on the Civil Rights movement.
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Watch a Movie or Documentary
If you’re looking for an inspirational documentary to watch together as a family, check out We Are the Dream, a film featuring the young performers in the Oakland Martin Luther King Oratorical Fest. It showcases young people raising their voices about issues they care about. You can also check out our list of Black History movies to watch with kids for more movies that discuss racism, civil rights, and segregation.
When selecting books and film, look for books and other media written, illustrated, or otherwise produced by Black creators to decenter whiteness and amplify Black voices.
Volunteer as a Family
You’ve probably seen the famous MLK quote, “Everyone can be great, because everybody can serve.” It’s a good reminder to children that no one is too small to make a difference.
Large group volunteer gatherings may be off the table this year, but organizations such Americorps and your local Y may still be organizing safe, socially-distant activities such as packing up food donations or making cards to send to elders. Plus, there are a variety of places you can volunteer in the NY metro area as a family.
Though this year may be the time to think small and act locally. Check in with your place of worship or other community centers. Is there a homebound person who could use a meal, a care package, or even just a plate of cookies and a handwritten note? Many folks have endured months of isolation, and reaching out with a kind gesture is a way to serve the community, too.
Donate What You Can
If you have the means, now could also be the time to make a charitable donation as a family. Kids can research organizations working on the issues that mean most to them, and collectively come to an agreement about where to give your family’s contribution.
The holiday provides parents with a good reminder to show our children that every day offers opportunities to do what is right.