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Martin's Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin LutherKing Jr.
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Martin's Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin LutherKing Jr.

4.41 of 5 stars 4.41  ·  rating details  ·  7,024 ratings  ·  751 reviews
The Barnes & Noble Review
Acclaimed author Doreen Rappaport and Coretta Scott King Award winner Bryan Collier, who previously collaborated on Freedom River , have pooled their talents yet again in a stunning tribute to civil rights activist Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. An extraordinary picture-book biography, Martin's Big Words consists of Rappaport's own words interwove
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published October 1st 2001 by Jump At The Sun
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When I was a child, I always wanted to learn more about the life and death of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. while at the same time, I wanted to see a picture book for children that details Dr. Martin Luther King Junior’s life in an uplifting way. Well, I just found such a picture book detailing Martin Luther King Junior’s life and it is called “Martin’s Big Words.” “Martin’s Big Words” is written by Doreen Rappaport along with illustrations by Bryan Collier and has won many awards including the Cal ...more
Lisa Vegan
Feb 04, 2011 Lisa Vegan rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: for learning about nonviolent activism, MLK, Jr., civil rights history, etc.
Oh, I had trepidation about reading this book because of some comments made over at the Children's Books group. (This book is one of six books selected for February’s Picture Books Club; the month’s theme is Black History Month.) It just goes to show that we’re all going to have different reactions to the same book.

I need not have worried. I thought this was a nearly perfect book for its aim; I think.

Outstanding illustrations done in collage, a form I admire and enjoy.

The book covers Martin Luth
I found this introductory biography of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to be both beautiful, inspiring... and a little frustrating.

On the one hand, I loved how the author incorporated MLK's "big words" into the story--most pages including actual quotes; but at the same time sometimes it felt a bit disjointed narrative-wise. Also, the narrative is so sparse that it lacks depth and I felt some key aspects of MLK's life were not explored sufficiently, even for a picture book. And I appreciate the fact
Martin's Big Words: The Life of Martin Luther King, Jr., recipient of the Jane Addams Children's Book Award, Caldecott Honor, and Coretta Scott King Honor, provides a balance between a retell of history and excerpts from his impacting speeches. The illustrations contain artistic medias of realistic paintings and collage, that gives the reader more insight on how powerful Martin's words were in piecing together the society that once existed. A must have to read aloud for elementary and secondary ...more
Crystal Marcos
I always appreciate added information in books. So, I found it wonderful to have important dates highlighted and additional MLK information added at the end of the book. After I read the book, I went back and read the author’s and Illustrator’s notes. It was interesting to find out their thoughts on how they approached creating this book. I did like the artwork although a tad on the dark side. I think Martin’s life would have been better depicted in light rather than dark, because he brought so ...more
Martin's Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is an excellent picture book for students of all ages, even though the book is intended for grades 1-3. I gave this book four stars (reallly liked it) mainly because of the unique format of the book. As opposed to just "telling" the story of Dr. King's life, Rappaport starts the story with Martin encountering the hurtful words WHITE ONLY and his mother's subsequent explanation that he is was "as good as anyone." The story of his life con ...more
L-Crystal Wlodek
This picture book, recommended for readers 8-10 years of age and has received the Coretta Scott King Award, Caldecott Honor (2002), New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Books (2001). This is a book that tells the story of MLK’s life and times. This narrative tells of MLK’s life and the Civil Rights Movement by weaving together the authors words and actual words spoken by MLK.

This book describes the Civil Rights Movement, inequality, and the life of MLK in a captivating and emotional way.
Martin's Big Words was written by Doreen Rappaport and illustrated by Bryan Collier. Published in 2001 by Jump at the Sun/Hyperion Books for Childre, it was a Cadecott Honor Book (2002), a Coretta Scott King Award Honor book (2002), and The New York Times Book Review Best Illustrated Children's Book for 2001. The illustrations in this book are amazing starting with the stain glass windows on the opening pages that reminds one of the Reverand Dr. Martin Luther King's roots. The text is also used ...more
I've been in education for 15 years, this is my first year as a principal. for the past 6 years I didn't have my own classroom or group of kids that I worked directly with.
I am soooooo excited to be with kids again! In the first week or so of school, I'll be going to each class and reading a book, and leaving it with the class. I got this one for the 5th graders, because it's beautiful and honors the intellectual capacity of this group of kids while tapping into their inate sense of justice.
I love this book! In the dozens of picture books about Martin Luther King Jr., this one stands out. I love the underlying message of the power of words, and the simplicity of the text underscores Martin’s message. The pictures, mixing collage and watercolor, add deeper layers to the story. The full page picture of the young African American girl in front of the American flag is at once inspiring and haunting. Both the author and the illustrator add a message at the beginning of the book explaini ...more
(NS) Panagiota Angelos
DVD- Non-print
Martin’s Big Words DVD features the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. The video begins with moving gospel music in the background, which plays throughout video. The narrator has a deep captivating voice and takes the viewer through the life of Martin Luther King. The story begins when Martin is a young boy and his view of the world. He questions and is very observant on how people are treated. The video continues focusing on his life events that lead up until his death. He was sh
Laura Rumohr
Martin's Big Words was written for children in the primary grades. This story is about the life of Martin Luther King Junior. MLK's quotes are woven throughout the words of the entire text. It begins when Martin is a young boy and continues through his death. When he was a child he recognized racism in the community and wanted to make a difference. When he grew up he became a minister and learned that hate could be overcome with love. Over the years he worked with city leaders to improve the rig ...more
L13_Allison Safran
"Martin's Big Words" is a great book that I have heard a lot about from other members in our Children's Literature class! The book is about the life and achievements of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

I watched this video on SchoolTube and I think it definitely added an element of interest for young readers. The video does a nice job of zooming in on details that corresponded with the text at the time. In the movie, the text moves and there is even background knowledge that is appropriate and support
Jan 19, 2010 Dolly rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
Of the three books that we read this year about Martin Luther King, Jr. in honor of his birthday, this one was by far my favorite. I have to echo the comments made by one reviewer that all the books seem to be written with the same script; but this one is just different enough to pique my interest. The illustrations are wonderful and I love the way his words echo throughout the book. I felt his conviction and his hope pour out from the pages. I really liked this story and our girls did too.

My f
I listened to this book as I read along was very moving. This Coretta Scott King Award, Caldecott Honor (2002), New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Books (2001) would be a great picture book to use during February as we celebrate African Heritage Month by using the words of Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech carefully chosen illustrations captivating the reader of the inequalities of the life of most African Americans during the acidic Rights Movement and how the words of one ma ...more
This is an outstanding book that inspires children of all backgrounds. It's an award winning book that has won the Coretta Scott King, Jane Adams, and Caldecott Awards. The illustrator did a phenomenal job of bring the story to life in a unique way with collages, and the book is has a story line that's easy to follow. It speaks to young children and talks about Dr King as a child and his journey and dream as a child. It's inspiring, invigorating and motivating for all. There's rich vocabulary an ...more
Martin's Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. imparts a powerful that was conveyed by the teachings of Dr. King. He fought hate with love, said together when others said separate, and believed that peace was the answer to war. Throughout his life, he lived to impart his message to others while he "Walked with them and talked with them and sang with them and prayed with them".

Even though I am not fond of the illustrative technique of the pictures that accompany this t
Kiah Ballard
This book is a good example of a children's history book. The wording was simply and I think it would be pretty easy for young children to understand. I would use this book to teach children about Martin Luther King Jr and how he made history.
I read this book on BookFlix. The website enables the story to come to life. The author tells the life story of Martin Luther King. "Everywhere in Martin's hometown, he saw the signs, WHITE ONLY. His mother told him: "You are as good as anyone." Martin used his words to create equality for all Americans. He talked to people for over ten years about justice before he gave his famous speech, "I have a Dream." His words will never be forgotten. I would read this book or show this book to students i ...more
(NS) Becca
To begin, the pictures in this book are breathtaking. The illustrator uses collage and mixed media to convey the wonderfully inspiring story of a young Martin Luther King, Jr. The words make a statement aside from the pictures, pointedly addressing the issue that MLK, JR. lives on through his powerful words, "I have a dream..." The story walks the reader through the life of MLK, Jr. and the people who pushed him to live for his dreams despite all the anger in the world. Any child who reads this ...more
Stephen Krawec
(Book #8 of Text Set)

Martin's Big Words is a beautifully written and illustrated biographical book about Martin Luther King, Jr. I would read this book aloud to students before a unit of the civil rights time in America’s history. For individual readers I would recommend this book in order to expand their knowledge about the past, but also to hopefully inspire them to find a voice if they felt an injustice was occurring in their lifetime. This book does a great job of using Martin Luther’s own w
Rappaport, Doreen.
[U.S.?] : Jump at the Sun/Hyperion ; London : Turnaround, 2002.
Language : English

Coretta Scott King Award

est Books :
Adventuring with Books: A Booklist for PreK-Grade 6, 13th Edition, 2002 National Council of Teachers of English
Best Children's Books of the Year, 2002 Bank Street College of Education
Booklist Book Review Stars, Oct. 1, 2001 American Library Association
Booklist Editors' Choice: Books for Youth, 2001 American Library Association
Books About Relationships and Communit
Megan Mercurio
This book gave me chills and was easily one of the best children’s books I have ever read! It was very touching. Honestly, I think this book is appropriate for any age. The meaning of the story can reach anyone or teach someone of any age about the power of Martin Luther King, Jr. There are few books that can touch and inspire people in the way this book touched me. This book is a great use of a biography. It gives an accurate description of Martin Luther King Jr.’s life and what happened throug ...more
KayLeigh Nava
Summary: This book is the story of MLK's life with a focus on the "Big Words". Each page has a quote from him or someone who as influenced him. The book starts of with him as a young boy seeing the WHITE ONLY signs and feeling bad about himself. His mother reminds him that he is as good as anyone else. MLK feels good as a young boy when he is listening to his father preach, reading his Bible, or singing hymns. He grows up to be a minister like he father, and shares with everyone that they can al ...more
Bianca Arias
Martin’s Big Words is the true story of the incredible Martin Luther King Jr. The story begins in Martin’s childhood when he first realizes the segregation between the people in his community and he was determined to make a difference. The story then continues to cover how he went about making change, peacefully. The book also includes other famous and peaceful influential figures that he had encounters with such as Rosa Parks.

The illustrations of the story were beautifully made and the layout o
Maria Armenta
This picture-book biography is an excellent and accessible introduction for young readers to learn about one of the world’s most influential leaders, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Beginning with the startling cover, which contains only the face of Martin Luther King Jr., with his smile broad, and his eyes crinkled in laughter, this title intrigues. It’s an homage in words and pictures, in which the author weaves King’s words with her own to present a brief but stately portrait of the American hero
Philip Carlson
WOW! Combined with powerful text and illustrations, this book is a must read for every child wanting to learn about the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and his contributions to the civil rights movement. The book wonderfully details the work of Dr. King as he strived to achieve equality for African Americans in a society that was opposed. It identifies the significance of his work and his never-ending attitude towards the attainment of his dreams and hopes. This book is an inspiration for r ...more
Caitlin Lawler
Martin’s Big Words by Doreen Rappaport is the story of one of the worlds most influential leaders in history. The story goes in chronological order of his life starting with a young Martin seeing white only signs and getting concerned. As he grows up he continues in his fathers footsteps and becomes a preacher. He studies the writings of Mahatma Gandhi. Inspired by Gandhi, Martin starts his own nonviolent protests by boycotting the busses and other civil right demonstrations. The book continues ...more
Rachael Mack
Martin’s Big Words is the story of the incredible Martin Luther King Jr. The story begins in Martin’s childhood when he first notices how people were segregated and wants to make a difference. The story then covers how he went about making change. It even includes other influential figures that he interacted with; such as Rosa Parks.
I really appreciated the layout of this story. It was different than any book I have ever seen. The title and author was not even listed on the cover, but was on th
The title says it all. Martin Luther King was an inspirational figure during the civil rights movement and this book goes over many of the key events that took place during this dark time in history. We go over segregation, racism, Rosa Parks and the walks on Washington in this book. This story definitely has no comedy to be seen, but the book itself does deserve a serious, thoughtful reading of the text. This is almost a reenactment of the events that made MLK become a leader for his people in ...more
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Biography book review 1 7 Jun 18, 2012 03:42PM  
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Doreen Rappaport has written many books of fiction and nonfiction for young readers, specializing in thoroughly researched multicultural history, historical fiction, retellings of folktales and myths, and stories of those she calls the "not-yet-celebrated." Among her recent books is MARTIN'S BIG WORDS: THE LIFE OF DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR., illustrated by Bryan Collier, which received a Caldecot ...more
More about Doreen Rappaport...
Helen's Big World: The Life of Helen Keller Abe's Honest Words: The Life of Abraham Lincoln Beyond Courage: The Untold Story of Jewish Resistance During the Holocaust Eleanor, Quiet No More To Dare Mighty Things: The Life of Theodore Roosevelt

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