5 bilingual activities to celebrate MLK day

Martin Luther King National Day. I Have A Dream Poster. Celebrat


  1. “I have a dream” speech – This is a classic MLK activity with three parts. First, students pick a goal/change they wish to achieve within the next few months such as a cleaner playground or healthier lunches. Next, students write a speech in Spanish and/or English similar to “I have a dream” explaining the goal and how they wish to achieve it. Finally, ask them to take action by creating awareness with posters and announcements to involve their classmates and the school. 
  2. Song writing – This is a fun activity for students to celebrate MLK day. Divide the students in groups and assign each group an MLK theme. Ask the students to come up with a short song in English and Spanish (or any other two languages being taught) which includes one verse in English, one is Spanish, and a chorus. Make it more challenging by asking them to rhyme if possible. Afterwards, ask the students to share their songs in class.
  3. Show and Tell- Ask your students to do a show and tell of their favorite MLK belief, value, or life event in their second language. Encourage students to teach new words or concepts to their classmates. Add a twist with a quick game of trivia or hangman after everyone has shared!
  4. Picture Challenge – Choose a few pictures from history related to MLK. The pictures should have objects, actions, and some meaning for students to analyze. Show the first picture for 10 seconds and then ask the students to write down as many objects/things as they saw in one minute. Then show the picture again for 15 seconds and ask the students to write actions they noticed in one minute. You can add more rounds where students are asked to write whole sentences based on their interpretation of the picture. This activity should be done in the language the children are learning.
  5. MLK and Friends – Take the opportunity for students to discover and learn about other activists like Dr. Martin Luther King such as Rosa Parks, Mahatma Gandhi, or Nelson Mandela in their primary language. Ask them to note 5 interesting facts about the activist they are studying. Then ask them to share their findings in the language they are learning with the class.

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