I used the Black Abolitionist biographies in a lesson where my students explored and learned about resistance to the institution of slavery before the Civil War.
First, we established norms around vocabulary, words that we would use to speak about slavery to shift the language away from dehumanization. Then, we listened to historical narratives from the Museum of the African Diaspora archive from the museum in San Francisco. We looked at the abolitionists’ biographies on the Zinn Education Project website and had a “tea party” where students discussed the person they read about. Finally, we watched the PBS special on William Still and ended the unit with a field trip to see the film Harriet.