Thursday, March 10, 2011

Civil Rights Lesson Plans

I am really looking forward to next week.
This week I didn't have students because the drill sargents kept them for a mid-year boot camp.  So is working at a para-military school.  So next week I have lessons planned that are interdisciplinary and centered on Civil Rights.

The goals:
  • read, write, and understand poetry
  • analyze historical biographies
  • create an art product about a Civil Rights leader
  • understand the economic impacts of the Montgomery bus boycott
  • identify ways youth impacted the Civil Rights movement
  • identify ways youth can become politically involved in politics today
While these are a lot of lofty goals, having students rotate through stations will make life a lot easier.  Making life easier still?  Many of the lessons I will be using were created this summer at an NEH workshop with some of the most amazing educators I have ever had the pleasure of working with.  

Plan for the week:
  • read a short biography of Rosa Parks from our Literature books
  • read a poem about Rosa Parks from our Literature books and analyze an art product accompanying the poem
  • watch a video introducing students to the Civil Rights movement
  • view PowerPoint presentation about children's role in the movement
  • complete station rotations 
  • in cooperative groups, read a biography about a Civil Rights leader
  • create a poem and art product about that Civil Rights leader
  • participate in a gallery walk to view other student's work
For the PowerPoint and stations (which include looking at how student's can be involved in politics today) I will be using you can visit the Wiki from the NEH workshop.  There are a ton of great resources on the wiki, including amazing projects and DBQ's from other groups.  For my group's work download the .zip file from Yellow Group 3.  

The Civil Rights Movement is huge!  What do you focus on?


  1. I just presented my lesson on the Civil Rights movement at a conference. My learning centers include: children's crusade, brown v board, bpp, freedom riders, tons and tons of primary sources from folks who protested. my biggest issue was that I could never find poetry. . . I'm open to suggestions

  2. Have you thought about using songs from the movement? The Carlton Reese Memorial Unity Choir from Birmingham still has several members from the original ACMHR choir and I think they have recordings available. The poetry station in our group project was about students creating their own poetic response, but I may add more music in the future.