BK Story Voyager literary recommendations

Laura Ennis, St. Nicks Alliance’s BK Story Voyager Coordinator, shares her favorite book that BKSV students are reading lately.

Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Martin Luther King Jr.
Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Martin Luther King Jr. by Doreen Rappaport, illustrated by Bryan Collier. Image source: doreenrappaport.com

by Laura Ennis

Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Martin Luther King Jr. allows young readers to understand the importance of Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy. Doreen Rappaport intertwines Dr. King’s famous quotes with the story of his life. Bryan Collier’s illustrations showcase beautiful artistry that empowers readers to make a visceral connection to Dr. King’s words.

The BK Story Voyager is a mobile lending library that provides literacy immersion for St Nicks Alliance after-school programs across North Brooklyn. On the BK Story Voyager, students used Martin’s Big Words to discuss Martin Luther King Jr.’s life as well as to better understand his role in American history and the Civil Rights Movement. This powerful children’s book is ideal for St. Nicks Alliance’s current literacy unit on dreams. Dr. King is the perfect example of someone who taught the world the power of dreaming. The students worked on activities that allowed them to delve deeper into his story. They reviewed important vocabulary in the text (segregation, hymn, citizen, and movement) by discussing the definition and making a pictorial representation of the word.

Dr. King is the perfect example of someone who taught the world the power of dreaming.

Another piece of our activity was to think about writing an epitaph for MLK. An epitaph’s form is a tribute in brief so it can fit on a tombstone. By completing this activity, the students were challenged to summarize Martin Luther King’s achievements in one or two sentences. These techniques and activities permit the students to use literacy skills and to build on their comprehension skills. This book is the perfect read for Black History Month, as it showcases one of the most important African American men to have lived in the United States.

Laura Ennis is the BKSV Coordinator at St Nicks Alliance. She holds a Master’s of Science in Education from the Bank Street College of Education and Bachelors of Arts in History from Brandeis University. As a proud Bostonian, Laura will always root for the Sox!

Author: The Greenline

Your monthly source for North Brooklyn community news covering Williamsburg, Greenpoint and Bushwick. Currently 13,000 copies are distributed throughout the community free of charge.

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