Saturday, January 15, 2011

Martin Luther King, Jr. Research Project


One of our expectations in first grade is to work on a research project.  Simple, but informative.  We used Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. as our first attempt at researching a person.  We watched a Brain Pop Jr. movie about Dr. King.  It's a free view right now on Brain Pop Jr.  After watching the movie, we took the "easy" test and discussed words like protests and segregation.  WOW!!!

We read the book "A Picture Book of Martin Luther King, Jr."  We webbed and discussed all the things we had learned about Dr. King from our research.  Then the task began for the kids to write 3 facts they learned about Dr. King or thought was interesting about Dr. King.  After the facts were written, they began a project to follow a set of sequenced steps to put together a portrait of Dr. King.
You can view a movie of our research project on my website.

I found the idea for the portrait on "What the Teacher Wants" blog.  I didn't have any templates, so I just made them up as we went along.  The kids do very well with the "hair cut" technique from Kinder Lit.

Mrs. Perry from "Primary Perspective" has some really great ideas about cut apart sentences with the portraits.  She also has the link to the templates (should've looked at her blog earlier!) to put the portrait together.  I think the original template was a freebie from Little Giraffes.  I also used her idea for charting the differences about brown and white eggs. kiddos got WAY off track on the how did the chick get in the egg and how do you know if an egg has a chick in it or not...whooh... inquisitive minds want to know!  It was an interesting discussion!

Have a fabulous day!


  1. This is great! We also watched the Brain Pop video, as well as, the one on Civil Rights. My students took "notes" during the movie. We also watched "My Friend Martin" which is one of my annual favorites. It is no longer in circulation, but you can try to find it on eBay or another seller's site. It is a wonderful depiction of his story, set in a kid-friendly cartoon.

  2. They turned out so cute! Sorry I didn't get the template up!!!! It's been so busy! But they really look great!


  3. I've got that video somewhere in VHS storage land...I'll have to see if I can find it. I remember getting it for my son and he loved it...I probably ended up giving it to his teacher at the time :(

    No worries about the template up're pics were was kinda neat to watch the kids create...Thanks for the idea!

  4. Your movie is amazing. I must say I was very touched, especially by the music. Is that song available anywhere? Your kids obviously were able to grasp the importance of the man and his amazing accomplishments. Thanks for sharing.

  5. The song is called "A Man Named King" and is available on "Greg and Steve" the holiday album. You can purchase the single from iTunes...just go to the iTunes store and type in the title in the search box. It should be the first song that comes up. You can also download the whole album. I think the album in 9.99 and the song is 99 cents.

  6. Thanks so much for sharing. What app did you use to make the movie on your web site? You have so many great ideas. Thanks again.