Child of the Civil Rights Movement
Early in the story, Shelton describes how when she first heard the term Jim Crow, she assumed her family was talking about birds (crows). This provided an opportunity for the teacher to talk about the term Jim Crow with the class. One of the students struggled to pronounce Jim Crow, saying “velcro” instead until her friends helped her out.
Throughout the book, Ms. Boyd would pause and discuss what they had just read. Students talked about why as a child Shelton was protesting at the restaurant where she and her family wanted to eat.
After the chapter, “The Civil Rights Family,” a student talked about the significance of food during the Civil Rights Movement and how dinners also were also for the purpose of organizing.
Throughout the book, students learned about the Freedom Riders, the Selma marches, and the 1965 Voting Rights Act.
At the end of the reading, students responded with text and drawings to the question, “What was life like for a child during the Civil Rights Movement?” One student answered by stating that if he was a child during the Civil Rights Movement, he would not have been able to go to certain places like parks and swimming pools. Another student [pictured left] said the story reminded her of a book they read recently about Ruby Bridges. In fact, she liked that book so much that it was in the cubby behind her chair. She pulled it out to show the class. It is always impressive to see students making historical and literature connections in second grade.