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https://www.storyboardthat.com/lesson-plans/i-have-a-dream-by-martin-luther-king-jr/paragraph-analysis

Activity Overview


In this activity, students will identify and explore a sentence or paragraph from the text that contributes to the goals of the speech and how it connects to other parts. This example is found at the beginning of the speech and identifies Martin Luther King Jr.'s purpose – to gain freedom and security for African Americans.

"So, we've come to cash this check, a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice."

Martin Luther King Jr. I Have a Dream

Three sentences connect with this idea in other parts of the speech:

  • “The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright days of justice emerge.” King is saying that they will not stop until justice is realized.

  • The second sentence is, “Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.” King is urging people to not let the desire for freedom allow hatred to overcome them.

  • Lastly, "We can never be satisfied as long as our children are stripped of their adulthood and robbed of their dignity by signs stating 'For Whites Only.'" This sentence admonishes his followers not to stop until their children have freedom and will no longer endure oppressive segregation.
Lesson Plan Reference

Grade Level 9-12

Difficulty Level 3 (Developing to Mastery)

Type of Assignment Individual or Partner

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/RI/6/5] Analyze how a particular sentence, paragraph, chapter, or section fits into the overall structure of a text and contributes to the development of the ideas.


Template and Class Instructions

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Use This Assignment With My Students", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)





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