African-American History Teacher Resources
Find African American History educational ideas and activities
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African American Homesteaders
Young scholars analyze the reasons African-Americans settled in the area to be known as Nebraska. Using primary source documents, they read about the challenges they faced and compare their growth and distribution of African-Americas in the 19th and 20th century. They discuss the feelings they get from photographs of the time period as well.
Free African-Americans in Delaware
Students work in groups of two and review the Abolitionist Movement. They observe the manumission/city directory and discover what it is and why it is so important. They read the manumission aloud and discuss why they were freeing their slaves and if they thought the pressure of the Quakers and other religious groups had an effect on the slaveowners.
Carter G. Woodson: Father of Black History Month
Students explore the life and accomplishments of Carter G. Woodson, the father of black history. They read and discuss his educational pursuits and discover he was the second black man in history to receive a doctor's degree. Students then note major events in Dr. Woodson's life.
Do's and Don'ts of Teaching Black History
Young scholars complete activities for Black History month. In this Black history month lesson, students complete assignments their teacher chooses after they have examined the do's and don'ts of teaching the subject.
Famous African Americans Mini-book
Students develop understanding of prejudice as they study famous African Americans. In this African American lesson, students become familiar with various African Americans and the obstacles they faced and overcame. Students put together an included mini-book.
Mosaic America: Paths To The Present
Seventh graders study the ideologies of life, values, love, peace and struggle of African Americans, Latinos and Native Americans as citizens of the United States. Authors and artists are used as tools to open the eyes of the students and allow them to see the impact and significance of cultures upon the history of the United States. Through traditional stories from different groups, they explore the customs and beliefs of their culture and others.
Willie and Friends: Overcomers in the Land Stories by Faith Ringgold
Students use puppets and plays to examine the role of African Americans throughout history. After being read a story by a puppet, they respond to each one in writing. Individually, they write a story about a place they have wanted to visit along with their feelings. To end the instructional activity, they make their own doll based on a character in a book and share it with the class.
On the Air
Students explore the issue of race in television since the 1950's, focusing specifically on African-American entertainers. After researching important issues, events, and television personalities of specific decades, students create TV guide issues.
Black Skin, White Justice: Race Matters in the Criminal Justice System
High schoolers examine the effects of race in the criminal justice system. As a class, they brainstorm a list of instances when the offender has been an African American and he is not treated fairly in court based on his race. They analyze their own reasons for the preceptions they have about the justice system and participate in a debate on whether the system can be changed to make it fair for all.
A Debate Against Slavery
Students collect information to conduct an argument against slavery. They read primary source documents and develop an argument against the institution as it existed in America.
The Freedom to Fight
Students study the African American troop experiences in the Civil War. In this American history activity, students examine primary and secondary sources regarding the experiences and contributions of African American soldiers who served during the Civil War. Students write persuasive pieces based on their research findings.
Social Studies: Civil Rights Unit: Grade 1
First graders discuss civil rights. In this civil rights unit, the student analyzes the roles of Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, and Ruby Bridges in the African American Civil Rights movement. They discuss which activist they feel contributed the most to the movement.
Students investigate the African American culture in the 1920's and the Harlem Renaissance. They read and analyze poems written by poets of the Harlem Renaissance, listen to jazz music and identify the characteristics of the music, and answer a discussion question.
Langston Hughes and the Blues
Students explore the connections between Langson Hughes and blues music. In this African American culture lesson, students compare and contrast blues music with poetry and short stories by Langston Hughes.
The Rise and Fall of the Jim Crow Era
Learners explore African American history by researching the Jim Crow laws. In this Civil Rights lesson plan, students define the Jim Crow laws, the reasons they were put into place, and how they were ultimately defeated. Learners write a paper about the volatile era between 1870 and 1960 and paint an image that reflects a political message about the unjust laws.
An American Hero: Harriet Tubman
Students investigate the life of Harriet Tubman. In this African American history lesson, students watch the video, "Harriet Tubman" and create a timeline of her life. Students write a paper about her accomplishments.
It Ain't Necessarily So
High schoolers examine characterization of African Americans in literature, popular culture, and opera. In this stereotypes lessons, students conduct research that requires them to analyze the origins and content of stereotypes perpetuated through media messages and how they translate into popular culture. High schoolers take surveys and gather information to form their impressions.
Tuskegee Airmen Lesson Plan No. 1
Students discuss the impact the Tuskegee Airman had on the military. They research one African-American military figure and create a role-play skit together.
World War II and Propaganda Efforts
Students define propaganda and list the various propaganda techniques used to influence people. They identify propaganda methods used by the American Government to encourage Americans to support the war effort
African-American Art and the Political Dissent during the Harlem Renaissance
Students are introduced to the culture of African American art. Using the internet, they research the events surrounding the Harlem Renaissance and discover how it produced a wide variety of art and literature. To end the lesson, by analyzing different pieces of artwork by various artists to identify the political statement in the art.