My class is currently learning how to analyze character traits using textual evidence. Since Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is around the corner, I decided to use Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by Doreen Rappaport to create character analysis collages with my students.
Martins big words

In this pictorial biography, Rappaport provides an age-appropriate portrayal of this influential leader, adding key quotes from King’s writing and speeches. These quotes are in bold, colorful print to capture students’ attention and help them understand King’s character. Before the lesson, I typed several quotes from the text, making each a different color, for students to use in their collages.

Martin's big words example

I read Martin’s Big Words aloud to my students, stopping to discuss quotes, describe feelings and make connections. The students were so engaged with the text!  Afterwards, I gave each student a piece of 11×18 white construction paper to draw MLK. First, they lightly sketched with pencil, then they outlined with Sharpie and finally colored with different shades of crayon.

MLK drawing

MLK drawing 2

After recess, I read the book again, this time giving each student a Post-It to record key character traits during read-aloud. Students then selected two to three quotes that supported the character traits they recorded on their Post-Its.

Martin's Big Words Character Analysis Collage quotes

Students glued their quotes and traits on their MLK drawings, creating these adorable character analysis collages.

MLK collage example 1

MLK example 2

MLK example 3

I hope you students will enjoy making these collages as much as mine did!

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