Traditionally in our public schools, we celebrate African American history during the months of January and February. We commence this celebration with the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and continue the celebration by highlighting various other great African Americans. This unit of instruction is intended to provide a consistent educational framework for the study of African American history in the elementary schools that is consistent with the Keys to Comprehension, writing standards, technology standards, and library media standards of the New Haven Public Schools. By providing such a framework, this unit enables teachers to provide a quality unit of instruction that supports the current standards-based curricula in addition to providing students with a rich historical perspective of the evolution of equality for African Americans.
The unit is written specifically for students in the second and third grades. However, there are additional activities and strategies for those students who academically function below or above the second and third grades. This information will enable teachers to plan differentiated lessons that address all ability levels and learning styles. In addition, the adaptation of this unit to include other elementary classes such as first grade or fourth grade would not be difficult. The range of literature and topics selected would support applications in any level classroom through collaboration with the library media specialist.
(Developed for History and Literacy, grades 2-3; recommended for History, grades 1-4)