Racism & Racial Identity

Resource Type:

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    • Andrew Jackson and the "Children of the Forest" (Lesson) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Andrew Jackson and the "Children of the Forest"

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. 5 pages.
      A lesson in which students develop critical literacy skills by responding to Andrew Jackson’s speech on “Indian Removal.”

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Early 19th Century: 1800 - 1849, 19th Century | Themes: Native American, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • Burned Out of Homes and History: Unearthing the Silenced Voices of the Tulsa Race Riot

    • Teaching Activity. By Linda Christensen. 20 pages.
      Teaching about patterns of displacement and wealth inequality through the 1921 Tulsa Race Riot.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Economics, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • The Cherokee/Seminole Removal Role Play (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • The Cherokee/Seminole Removal Role Play

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. 10 pages.
      Role play on the Cherokee-Seminole removal or Trail of Tears.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Early 19th Century: 1800 - 1849, 19th Century | Themes: Democracy & Citizenship, Native American, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • The Color Line (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • The Color Line

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. 6 pages.
      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.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Colonization: 1492 - 1764, 18th Century | Themes: African American, Laws & Citizen Rights, Native American, Racism & Racial Identity, Slavery | Reading Levels: High School
    • The Draft Riot Mystery

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. 9 pages.
      Students are invited to solve a mystery, using historical clues, about the real story of the Draft Riots.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Civil War Era: 1850 - 1864, 19th Century | Themes: Democracy & Citizenship, Immigration, Racism & Racial Identity, Slavery, Social Class, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements | Reading Levels: High School
    • Five Years After the Levees Broke: Bearing Witness Through Poetry (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Five Years After the Levees Broke: Bearing Witness Through Poetry

    • Teaching Activity. By Renée Watson. 7 pages.
      A teacher’s reflection on the power of poetry to spark critical discussion and reflection on current issues of inequality surrounding disaster response in the United States.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: 2001 - Present, 21st Century | Themes: African American, Art & Music, Environment & Food, Language Arts, Laws & Citizen Rights, Media, Racism & Racial Identity |
    • Freedom’s Unfinished Revolution: Teaching a People’s History of Reconstruction (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Freedom's Unfinished Revolution: Teaching a People’s History of Reconstruction

    • Background Reading for Teachers. By Bill Bigelow. 4 pages.
      A review of Freedom’s Unfinished Revolution, a collection of primary documents for high school on the Civil War and Reconstruction.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Reconstruction Period: 1865 - 1876, 19th Century | Themes: African American, Laws & Citizen Rights, Racism & Racial Identity, Slavery | Reading Levels: High School
    • The History All Around Us: Roosevelt High School and the 1968 Eastside Blowouts

    • Teaching Activity. By Brian C. Gibbs. 6 pages.
      A teacher uses the activist history of Theodore Roosevelt High School in East Los Angeles to pose students the question: “What would you be willing to do to create change?”

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, 20th Century | Themes: Latino, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • ‘If There Is No Struggle...’: Teaching a People’s History of the Abolition Movement

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. 16 pages.
      In this role play, students become members of the American Anti-Slavery Society, facing many of the real challenges to ending slavery.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Early 19th Century: 1800 - 1849, Civil War Era: 1850 - 1864, 19th Century | Themes: African American, Civil Rights Movements, Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity, Slavery | Reading Levels: Adult, Grades 6-8, High School
    • It’s a Mystery—White Workers Against Black Workers

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 8 pages.
      In this “mystery” activity, students receive clues and discuss some of the factors that contributed to the intensification of racism in the 1920s in many parts of the United States.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Themes: African American, Labor, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • Learning About the Unfairgrounds: A 4th-Grade Teacher Introduces Her Students to Executive Order 9066 (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Learning About the Unfairgrounds: A 4th-Grade Teacher Introduces Her Students to Executive Order 9066

    • Teaching Activity. By Katie Baydo-Reed. 10 pages.
      Students hold a “tea party” and a mock trial in preparation for reading literature about internment.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Asian American, Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, Racism & Racial Identity, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements |
    • A Lesson on the Japanese American Internment (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • A Lesson on the Japanese American Internment

    • Teaching Activity. By Mark Sweeting. 4 pages.
      How one teacher engaged his students in a critical examination of the language used in textbooks to describe the internment.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Asian American, Democracy & Citizenship, Education, Laws & Citizen Rights, Racism & Racial Identity, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements | Reading Levels: High School
    • The Other Internment: Teaching the Hidden Story of Japanese Latin Americans During WWII (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • The Other Internment: Teaching the Hidden Story of Japanese Latin Americans During WWII

    • Teaching Activity. By Moé Yonamine. 18 pages.
      Poetry, photography, and text are used in this role play to teach about the seldom told history of Japanese Latin American internment during WWII.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Asian American, Civil Rights Movements, Democracy & Citizenship, Immigration, Laws & Citizen Rights, Racism & Racial Identity, US Foreign Policy, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements, World History/Global Studies | Reading Levels: High School
    • Presidents and Slaves: Helping Students Find the Truth (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Presidents and Slaves: Helping Students Find the Truth

    • Teaching Activity. By Bob Peterson. 7 pages.
      How a 5th grade teacher and his students conducted research to answer the question: “Which presidents owned people?” Available in Spanish.

    • Resource Types: Spanish/Bilingual, Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: 18th Century, 19th Century | Themes: African American, Education, Racism & Racial Identity, Slavery | Reading Levels: Grades 3-5, Grades 6-8
    • Promoting Social Imagination Through Interior Monologues (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Promoting Social Imagination Through Interior Monologues

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Linda Christensen. 3 pages.
      Empathy, or “social imagination,” allows students to connect to “the other” with whom, on the surface, they may appear to have little in common.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: All US History | Themes: Language Arts, Racism & Racial Identity, Slavery, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements, Women's History | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • Pump Up the Blowouts: Reflections on the 40th Anniversary of the Chicano/a School Blowouts (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Pump Up the Blowouts: Reflections on the 40th Anniversary of the Chicano/a School Blowouts

    • Teaching Activity. By Gilda L. Ochoa. 5 pages.
      Reflections on teaching students about the 1968 walkouts by Chicano students in California.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, 20th Century | Themes: Civil Rights Movements, Education, Latino, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • Reading Between the Lines: An Art Contest Helps Students Imagine the Lives of Runaway Slaves (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Reading Between the Lines: An Art Contest Helps Students Imagine the Lives of Runaway Slaves

    • Teaching Activity. By Thom Thacker and Michael A. Lord. 4 pages.
      An art contest is used as the basis from which students can examine primary historical documents (advertisements for runaway slaves) to gain a deeper understanding of the institution of slavery in the North.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Colonization: 1492 - 1764, Revolution & Constitution: 1765 - 1799, Early 19th Century: 1800 - 1849, Civil War Era: 1850 - 1864, 18th Century, 19th Century | Themes: African American, Racism & Racial Identity, Slavery | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • Reclaiming Hidden History: Students Create a Slavery Walking Tour in Manhattan (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Reclaiming Hidden History: Students Create a Slavery Walking Tour in Manhattan

    • Teaching Activity. By Alan J. Singer. 7 pages.
      How a teacher and his students organized a tour of the hidden history of slavery in New York.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Colonization: 1492 - 1764, Revolution & Constitution: 1765 - 1799, Early 19th Century: 1800 - 1849, Civil War Era: 1850 - 1864, 18th Century, 19th Century | Themes: African American, Racism & Racial Identity, Slavery | Reading Levels: High School
    • Reconstructing the South: A Role Play

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. 17 pages.
      This role play engages students in thinking about what freedpeople needed in order to achieve—and sustain—real freedom following the Civil War. It’s followed by a chapter from the book Freedom’s Unfinished Revolution on what would happen to the land in the South after slavery ended.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Reconstruction Period: 1865 - 1876, 19th Century | Themes: African American, Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, Racism & Racial Identity, Slavery | Reading Levels: High School
    • School Days: Hail, Hail, Rock ‘n’ Roll! (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • School Days: Hail, Hail, Rock 'n' Roll!

    • Teaching Activity. By Rick Mitchell. 10 pages.
      Description of a course on the history of music in the United States.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, 20th Century | Themes: Art & Music, Civil Rights Movements, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • "A School Year Like No Other": Eyes on the Prize: "Fighting Back: 1957-1962"

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. 7 pages.
      A companion lesson to the Eyes on the Prize segment on school integration.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Civil Rights Movements, Education, Laws & Citizen Rights, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • Southern Tenant Farmers' Union: Black and White Unite?

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 12 pages.
      Role play on farm labor organizing in the 1930s shows how racism had to be challenged to create effective worker alliances.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Labor, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • Stealing Home: Eminent Domain, Urban Renewal, and the Loss of Community (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Stealing Home: Eminent Domain, Urban Renewal, and the Loss of Community

    • Teaching Activity. By Linda Christensen. 9 pages.
      Teaching about patterns of displacement and wealth inequality through the history of Chávez Ravine and the building of Dodger Stadium.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Cold War: 1945 - 1960, 20th Century, 21st Century | Themes: African American, Economics, Latino, Laws & Citizen Rights, Racism & Racial Identity, Social Class | Reading Levels: High School
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