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Social Studies – Black History Month
Language Arts, Social Studies
4, 5, 6, 7, 8
Title – A Walk Through History – In Honor of Black Americans
by – Susan P. Genesi
Subject – Social Studies, Language Arts – History, U.S. History, African American History, Biography
Grade Level – Intermediate/Middle School
In observance of Black History Month, students will research the lives of African Americans who have made special contributions to American life and society. The students will write a short biography highlighting the person’s contribution. In addition, the students will create a monument in honor of the individual. The culminating activity of the lesson will be a monument walk.
The students will:
-Recognize contributions made by African Americans to American life and society.
-Defend ideas and assertions with factual research.
-Write a well-organized description of African Americans contributions to American life and society.
-Create monuments honoring African Americans and their contributions.
This lesson requires the following materials:
-Introductory videotape and other resources as an overview of the African American experience in U.S. history.
-Access to encyclopedias, reference books and other informational materials relating to African Americans.
-Variety of materials to create monuments.
Explain February is Black History Month
1. Brainstorm African Americans and their specific contributions to American life and society.
2. Pass out list of African American Leaders.
3. Students choose one to research.
4. Tell students they are researching to answer the question, “What contribution did you make to American life and society?”
5. Once the students have discovered the answer to the question, a brief description of their contribution is to be written.
6. After the description is completed, students are to construct a monument in honor of the individual.
7. Upon completion, the monument and description is to be displayed.
The students will walk through the displayed monuments learning about African Americans’ contributions to American life and society.
Create a rubric based upon lesson concepts to assess students’ completed work.
The following URLs were fruitful hits containing relevant information needed for successfully implementing this lesson:
The following sites provided specific information about famous African Americans and their contributions to American life and society.