Putting the Movement Back into Civil Rights Teaching



Teaching the Civil Rights Movement Conference at Howard University

In 1995, Teaching for Change partnered with Poverty & Race Research Action Council and the Howard University History Department to host a full day conference on teaching about the Civil Rights Movement for 300 D.C. area teachers. The conference featured keynote speakers Bob Moses, Howard Zinn, Suzan Shown Harjo, Sonia Sanchez, and multiple workshops. Read more.

Civil Rights Movement Teaching Guide Published

Putting the Movement Back into Civil Rights Teaching was published in 2004, in partnership with Poverty & Race Research Action Council and with a stellar list of advisors. The book was launched in DC at the National Council of Negro Women with Dorothy Height, Jesse Jackson Jr., Eloise Greenfield, and other esteemed speakers. Book launch photos.

The book received the Philip C. Chinn Multicultural Book Award 2004 and has received widespread acclaim, including from John Carlos and Kelly Starling Lyons.


Professional and Curriculum Development

The book led to an invitation by the superintendent of the McComb Public Schools (where SNCC got its start in Mississippi, also known as the church burning capital of the state during the Civil Rights Movement) to work with his staff beginning in 2006. This led to six years of work in McComb and a statewide effort on teaching about the Civil Rights Movement and labor history.

The book has been the catalyst for other presentations, workshops, and institutes including:

Lessons and Other Resources

Teaching for Change maintains the CivilRightsTeaching.org website and continues to develop new lessons, such as on the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party and Selma. There are also new popular online resources such as on Transportation Protests and a Race and Education Timeline.

Teaching for Change has partnered with the SNCC Legacy Project to bring veterans on virtual visits to classrooms, to add an education section to the SNCC Legacy Project website, and other strategies to bring the history of SNCC to classrooms.

On the Ground in Mississippi

Beginning in 2006, Teaching for Change staff worked with staff, students, and community members in McComb to infuse Civil Rights Movement history into the curriculum. The Kellogg Foundation funded to a two-year initiative on teaching about the Civil Rights Movement and labor history in Mississippi.  Teaching for Change established a partnership with Historypin to create an online map for students and teachers to collect and share the hidden history of Mississippi. Read more about our work in Mississippi.