Civil Rights Books for Elementary
This semester we are doing a unit on the Civil Rights Movement. I came up with a long list of books that we can read with this unit. Most of them I found at our local library. I thought I would share the list I compiled in case someone else might find it useful:
Civil Rights Movement Books you may want to read with your students:
- Ruth and the Green Book
- Freedom Summer
- The Story Of Ruby Bridges by Robert Coles
- Through My Eyes by Ruby Bridges
- The Lions of Little Rock
- Freedom on the Menu: The Greensboro Sit-Ins
- Freedom School, Yes!
- Boycott Blues: How Rosa Parks Inspired a Nation
- Sit-In: How Four Friends Stood Up by Sitting Down
- Take a Walk in Their Shoes: Biographies of 14 Outstanding African Americans by Glennette Tilley Turner
- Child of the Civil Rights Movement
- A Sweet Smell of Roses
- The Other Side
- White Socks Only
- I’ve Seen the Promised Land: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.If A Bus Could Talk: The Story of Rosa Parks
Middle School (these are affiliate links)
- The Watsons Go to Birmingham–1963 – We are listening to the audiobook version of this. It is not quite what I expected. It’s very good so far, but it is more about the boys relationship with one another the first portion of the book.
- Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry
- Devil on My Heels
- Mr. Touchdown
- Freedom Songs
- The $66 Summer: A Novel of the Segregated South
- One Crazy Summer
- My Mother the Cheerleader
Movies (these are affiliate links)
- The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman (nominated for 9 Emmy Awards) – weaves the story of a 110 year old woman from the Slavery/Civil War to Civil Rights — A great way to start out this unit (for 10+, a few difficult scenes lynching, etc.)
- The Rosa Parks Story
- The Long Walk Home– About the Montgomery Bus Boycott
- Selma, Lord, Selma
- Ruby Bridges
**Civil Rights Movement Lessons (Free Packet) – In some ways this is the core of what I want the kids to learn from this unit… what are rights? What is the difference between someone’s rights and a privilege? What is it like to be a part of a group? When can it be hard/painful to be left out? Judging people by what they look like. The power of speeches. This is a 13 page packet of discussion questions and lesson ideas on all that and terms like prejudice, bias, racism, etc.
**Free Civil Rights Packet: Timeline of Events Leading to the Civil Rights Movement — This packet covers the 350 year history prior to the Civil Rights Era. It also includes several pages of photos so kids can make their own timeline.
**Civil Rights Movement: School Integration, Sit-Ins and Selma — books and movies my kids loved
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