Teaching Materials

Bull Run

Book - Fiction. By Paul Fleischman. 1993. A historical novel for middle school and above about the Civil War Battle of Bull Run drama told in 16 voices.
Time Periods: 19th Century, Civil War Era: 1850 - 1864
Themes: Wars & Related Anti-War Movements
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COINTELPRO: Teaching the FBI’s War on the Black Freedom Movement

Teaching Activity. By Ursula Wolfe-Rocca. 29 pages. Through examining FBI documents, students learn the scope of the FBI’s COINTELPRO campaign to spy on, infiltrate, discredit, and disrupt all corners of the Black Freedom Movement.
Time Periods: 20th Century, People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, Post-Civil Rights Era: 1975 - 2000
Themes: African American, Civil Rights Movements, Democracy & Citizenship, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity
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Catch a Tiger by the Toe

Book - Fiction. By Ellen Levine. 2005. 176 pages. A historical novel for middle school on McCarthyism.
Time Periods: 20th Century, Cold War: 1945 - 1960
Themes: Democracy & Citizenship, Labor, Laws & Citizen Rights, Media
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Chain of Fire

Book - Fiction. By Beverley Naidoo, illustrated by Eric Velasquez. 1993. When the South African government forces a village to relocate, young protesters, who do not have the freedom of speech, organize a march against apartheid.
Time Periods: 20th Century, Cold War: 1945 - 1960, People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, Post-Civil Rights Era: 1975 - 2000
Themes: World History/Global Studies
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Chains

Book - Fiction. By Laurie Halse Anderson. 2010. 336 pages. Historical fiction based on the life of an enslaved teenager during the Revolutionary War.
Time Periods: Revolution & Constitution: 1765 - 1799
Themes: African American, Slavery, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements
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The Cherokee/Seminole Removal Role Play

Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. What led up to the Trail of Tears? Students role play the decision to remove the Cherokee and Seminole people from their lands.
Time Periods: 19th Century, Early 19th Century: 1800 - 1849
Themes: Democracy & Citizenship, Native American, Racism & Racial Identity
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Chickadee

Book - Fiction. By Louise Erdrich. 2012. 208 pages. The fourth book in the series following the Ojibwe girl Omakayas and her family as their lands are invaded by white settlers.
Time Periods: 19th Century, Early 19th Century: 1800 - 1849
Themes: Native American
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Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type

Book - Fiction. By Doreen Cronin. Illustrated by Betsy Lewin. 2000. A barnyard struggle where the cows go on strike and the farmer is forced to negotiate.
Themes: Labor, Organizing
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Climate Change Mixer

Teaching activity. By Bill Bigelow. Role play introduces students to 17 individuals around the world—each of whom is affected differently by climate change.
Time Periods: 21st Century
Themes: Climate Justice, Environment & Food, World History/Global Studies
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Coal Mountain Elementary

Book - Non-fiction. By Mark Nowak. 2009. An expose of the coal industry using a combination of poetry, images, first person testimonies, and newspaper accounts.
Themes: Climate Justice, Environment & Food, Labor
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The Color Line (Lesson) | Zinn Education Project

The Color Line

Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. A lesson on the countless colonial laws enacted to create division and inequality based on race. This helps students understand the origins of racism in the United States and who benefits.
Time Periods: Colonization: 1492 - 1764, 18th Century
Themes: African American, Laws & Citizen Rights, Native American, Racism & Racial Identity, Slavery
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Congo, Coltan, and Cell Phones: A People’s History

Teaching Activity. By Alison Kysia. 28 pages. In this lesson, students learn about the colonial history of Congo, debate responsibility for crimes against humanity, and investigate the connection, past and present, between the exploitation of natural resources and violence.
Time Periods: 19th Century, 20th Century
Themes: Imperialism, US Foreign Policy, World History/Global Studies
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Constitution Role Play: Whose “More Perfect Union”? and The Constitutional Convention: Who Really Won?

Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. 23 pages. The U.S. Constitution endorsed slavery and favored the interests of the owning classes. What kind of Constitution would have resulted from founders who were representative of the entire country? That is the premise of this role play activity.
Time Periods: 18th Century, Revolution & Constitution: 1765 - 1799
Themes: African American, Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, Racism & Racial Identity, Slavery, Social Class
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Crow (Book) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History

Crow

Book - Fiction. By Barbara Wright. 2012. Historical fiction about an Reconstruction era African American community violently robbed of its freedom and democracy in turn of the century North Carolina.
Time Periods: 19th Century, Reconstruction Period: 1865 - 1876
Themes: African American, Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, Media
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Daughter of Earth: Reading, Writing, and Social Class

Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. 7 pages. Students read a poignant excerpt from Agnes Smedley's novel, Daughter of Earth, and use it to think and write about how schooling—their own included—teaches lessons about social class.
Time Periods: 20th Century, Turn of the Century: 1900 - 1909
Themes: Education, Social Class, Women's History
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Daybreak of Freedom: The Montgomery Bus Boycott

Book – Non-fiction. Edited by Stewart Burns 1997. 392 pages. A documentary history of the Montgomery bus boycott that reverberates with the voices of those closest to the boycott.
Time Periods: Cold War: 1945 - 1960
Themes: African American, Civil Rights Movements, Racism & Racial Identity
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Dayshaun’s Gift

Book - Fiction. By Zetta Elliott. 2015. Time travelling historical fiction for upper elementary school students on the New York City Draft Riots.
Time Periods: 19th Century, Civil War Era: 1850 - 1864
Themes: African American, Racism & Racial Identity
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