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MIDDLE SCHOOL TEXT SET

Enduring Understandings: Historic and Current Events

The authors of the Common Core (2010, p. 33) advocate for studying topics or themes across grade levels in order for students to build understanding. The same enduring understandings can be pursued across grade levels as students engage in studying increasingly complex texts and issues. This text set for the middle grades addresses the same enduring understandings as the intermediate grade text set:

•  A person or group’s beliefs can serve as motivation to take action and advocate for social justice.

• Working together in nonviolent ways can lead to momentous changes in society and the culture of communities.

• Effecting change takes time, strategic thinking, and determination.

For middle school students, there are several recommendable books on the civil rights movement during the 1950’s and 1960’s. For this text set, we chose one core text, the award-winning Marching for Freedom: Walk Together, Children, and Don’t You Grow Weary (Partridge, 2009). The core text could be read aloud or read in pairs. The photographs, song lyrics, and quotes that are embedded in this book can serve as primary sources for additional discussion.

For lessons on close reading, we carefully chose excerpts from the core text that revealed key themes. In addition, there were dozens of individual titles in the classroom library for students to read independently, with partners, or in small groups. For additional details about the core text and other related titles, read my reviews at Goodreads.com.  Embedded in the reviews are links to recommended primary sources.

CORE TEXT

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