Martin Luther King, Jr. is one of my favorite people to study. In fact, my children and I study him every year. He had such a fascinating life!
Because we study Dr. King each year, I decided to purchase quite a few books about him. Our local library only has a few copies of each, and it worked out better for me to buy them, instead of waiting in the library queue.
So this week’s book list for kids is all about Dr. King and the contributions he made to United States history.
Make sure you don’t miss:
→ Word Search Packet for January – contains 2 MLK word searches
Favorite Books About Martin Luther King, Jr.
Rest assured that I don’t recommend books without reading them first myself. I’ve personally read each of these books multiple times with my children, so they come highly recommended by me!
I added my own thoughts and reasons to each book, so you can decide if it’s a good fit for you and your children.
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March On! The Day My Brother Martin Changed the World – by Christine King Farris
Topping my list of favorite MLK books is March On! The Day My Brother Martin Changed the World. This is an account of Dr. King’s infamous speech at the March on Washington in August 1963.
Christine King Farris, King’s sister, recounts the story in fine detail in an emotionally powerful way.
A must read!
Martin Luther King, Jr. and the March on Washington by Francis Ruffin
This is another book that specifically deals with Dr. King’s involvement in the March on Washington. The author uses very simple language to convey the details and emotions of that day.
This would make a great read aloud for younger children, or an independent read for more intermediate readers since the text is fairly simple.
Martin Luther King, Jr. by Amy Pastan
DK books are known for their amazing real-life pictures, and this one is no exception! This biography of Dr. King gives an adequate amount of detail about civil rights issues at the time, without burdening younger readers.
We get to know Dr. King from when he was a little boy, through his years as a minister and peace activist, and learn about his work to bring all races together.
This book is a bit lengthy with several chapters, but makes a very comprehensive read aloud for kids of all ages, especially Kindergarten and up. You could easily use it for independent reading assignments for 4th-6th graders as well.
Who Was Martin Luther King, Jr? by Bonnie Bader
I just love the ‘Who Was…’ series! It is the perfect amount of text for my 2nd grader at her current reading level.
Who Was Martin Luther King, Jr. includes just the right amount of detail for Kindergarten-4th grade children, and has black and white pictures sprinkled throughout.
A complete (and interesting!) biography!
A Picture Book of Martin Luther King, Jr. by David A. Adler
My little girls and I love this picture book biography of Dr. King. If you can only check out one biography for the Preschool – 2nd Grade crowd, this should be the one!
The illustrations are excellent and the content is just right for this age range.
I Have a Dream by Kerry Graves
This is an older book, so I had to buy a used copy. However, the content and photographs are still relevant and wonderful!
I use this book as independent reading for my older two children (4th and 6th grades). The text focuses primarily on Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech and the story and preparation behind it.
I’ve Seen the Promised Land by Walter Dean Myers
This is another wonderful picture book biography of Dr. King’s life. The text and illustrations are geared towards Preschool – 2nd or 3rd grade, yet a comprehensive explanation of the civil rights movement and King’s involvement is well presented.
This book also has a timeline, which is helpful for elementary age children.
What are YOUR favorite books about Martin Luther King, Jr.?