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Activists and Protests Teacher Resources
Find teacher approved Activists and Protests educational resource ideas and activities
Many educators focus on the civil rights movement as it occurred after Rosa Parks incited the bus boycott. Extend the understanding of the fight for civil rights in the United States with this post-WWII lesson. Learners examine and discuss several primary historical documents and a "who, what, where" activity to better understand life for African-Americans during the 1940s. They then compose an explanatory writing piece in the form of a letter home.
Learners examine the US Constitution, Bill of Rights, and Supreme Court cases in order to broaden their understanding of the US Judicial System. They research a variety of textual and Internet resources to create a tri-fold brochure, which houses a summary and pro/con argument related to one Civil Rights issue.
Using the book, Martin's Big Words, learners will discover the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Vocabulary is identified throughout the story by using several his famous protest speeches as examples. Class discussions on racism, during the era of King, as well as the impact it has on our everyday lives, are used as an engagement strategy. Tip: Bring in internet photos of the speeches and recordings to provide higher engagement.
Research the Montgomery Bus Boycott and Rosa Parks. Set up different centers and have learners rotate through the activities aimed at researching Rosa Parks. They read The Bus Ride that Changed History: The Story of Rosa Parks, write a newspaper article, create a demonstration poster, and create a storyboard.
All humans should have civil rights, but that wasn't the case in Alabama. This biographical presentation shares information about the life and inspiration that Rosa Parks brought to the Civil Rights movement. It explains her thoughts, the laws, and why her nonviolent protest was so effective.
Students conduct research on the Civil Rights Movement and participants in order to create an encyclopedia with alphabetical articles about some of the leaders and the ordinary people who made a difference in the movement. The articles for the encyclopedia are written so first-graders are able to read and understand.
Students examine protest music and songs from the Civil Rights movement. In this music of the Civil Rights era instructional activity, students listen to selected music before working in groups to determine who the music was directed at, what social ills the lyrics were addressing, and what affect the music had. They write an essay using music and a primary source document.
Synthesizing information from a PBS documentary Ralph Bunche: An American Odyssey, its companion website, and several other resources (links to which are provided), high schoolers evaluate whether Bunche did all he could to advance the Civil Rights Movement. They choose a side and develop their arguments for a class debate. Resource offers a model for developing a position and participating in debates about issues or current events.