Printable Martin Luther King, Jr. Worksheets and Puzzles
A great offering of printable worksheets on Martin Luther King, Jr. Includes language arts skills and puzzles. The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Junior's birthday is January 15.
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- Martin Luther King Jr. Background
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The Life of Martin Luther King Jr.
Contrary to popular beliefs, a great leader is born. It is the impeccable qualities that some individuals are born with. This is not to say that people cannot learn and adopt these qualities, but for the most part, leadership qualities are innate.
History is full of great leaders, who have achieved great things in their lifetime, leaving a legacy to learn from, and from that lot, one leader that everyone knows of, and someone who continues to inspire people with his words and his resilience towards equality of people is none other than Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, a man who spent a majority of his life, fighting for
What makes Dr. Martin Luther King a remarkable leader is the courage and integrity that he embodied throughout his life. More than that, not at any point did Martin Luther King Jr give up on his dreams which had become the dreams of the African Americans. His dreams, aspirations, and efforts to date resonate with people worldwide, irrespective of their background or race.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr was not only preaching and educating people around him, but he also continued to educate himself. These are a few reasons to look up to leaders like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr and hold onto their incredible legacy.
Childhood and Education
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr was born on January 15, 1929, to Michael King Sr and Alberta King. As a young child, Martin attended local grammar and high schools until enrolling in Morehouse College in Atlanta in 1944. Unlike his father, he did not intend to enter the ministry until Dr. Benjamin Mays changed his mindset and convinced him that a religious career would also be intellectually fulfilling. Dr. Martin was passionate about education, and after completing his graduate studies, he also achieved a doctorate.
Like many other African American children, Dr. Martin also experienced racial prejudice at a very tender age. That was enough to inspire him to work towards ensuring people of all colors wholly experienced quality and justice. Despite his experience of racial bias, Dr. Martin remained a kind individual who believed that people could achieve social change social by peacefully rejecting laws that instigate injustice.
Activism Work and Civil Rights Movement
Dr. Martin eventually returned to the South, where he took the position of pastor at the Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery. This was when the king first became directly involved in the civil rights movement, as he helped mobilize the African American community during the Montgomery Bus boycott. This essentially put Dr. Martn in the public's view, but he managed not to get arrested and dealt with violent harassment that came as an evident consequence of his involvement in the boycott.
Soon enough king became a hero nationally and simultaneously gained popularity and importance as a key figure in the civil rights movement. Growing more and more involved in the struggles of African American and segregation, he brought many African American leaders in 1957 and started the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.
After being elected president of the conference, Dr. Martin also helped other communities organize and conduct peaceful and non-violent protests against discrimination. During this phase of his life, Dr. Martin became one of the most influential social leaders of the modern American civil rights movement.
His efforts were unprecedented, and in 1963, he extended his activism towards one of the most divided cities in America at that time, Birmingham, Alabama. Police brutality was at a peak as they assaulted young African Americans. The outrage poured in nationally and firmly instated the need for civil rights legislation. Dr. Martin wrote the "Letter from a Birmingham Jail" during his campaign here, which highlighted his philosophies and tactics.
Dr. Martin was a leader who dedicated his life to bringing forth much-needed change in America, but his dreams were larger than life, and today they have influenced many across the world to adopt his peaceful attitude towards changing and tackling the societal issues we face. His input in the civil rights movement still gave courage to people, and his speeches which became worldwide famous, still inspire people to work for people.
Dr. Martin was on a constant move to fighting inequality in America, so unsurprisingly, he was also involved in driving the March for Jobs and Freedom. Over a quarter-million people attended the March, which was also when Dr. Martin gave his stellar "I have a Dream" speech. Not only did this speech reach the hearts of people globally then and even today, this speech allowed people to acknowledge him as a social change leader fully.
By this time, Dr. Martin had become popular, his efforts widely recognized by the people of America. After doing so much for his society and race, one would assume he was quite old when he was still young. In fact, in 1964, at only 35 years old, Dr. Martin was the youngest person to win the Nobel Peace Prize at the time. Since the start of his career, Dr. Martin has encouraged people to choose peace, even when fighting against injustice.
In 1964, his efforts paid off when Congress eliminated racial segregation across the United States by approving the Civil Rights Act. After a prolonged battle against racism, this bill officially made it illegal to discriminate against African Americans or other minorities in almost all areas.
A long battle, but it was because of Dr. Martin and others like himself who relentlessly fought for the rights of African American people and minorities living in America.
In a nutshell
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr has undoubtedly lived a fulfilling life, a life that he dedicated to the African American community, striving for a peaceful and accepting society where people of different color could live without fear of being isolated or assaulted just for being different. His career was relatively short, as he was assassinated at the young age of 39, but his courage and messages of peace and acceptance still echo around the world. In a short span, he became the leader of millions who looked up to him for his strength.