In the first article in this issue, “First Graders’ Inquiry into Multicolored Stories of School (De)Segregation,” Sohyun An presents silenced-yet-powerful stories of three Americans—girls of Indigenous, Chinese, and Mexican ancestry—who fought for equal education in America in the last century. Their struggles all pre-dated that of the better-known African-American girl, Ruby Bridges, whose story is included in the first grade unit plan, which includes handouts that can be found in the Pullout.
Jennifer L. Altieri explains in her article, “Enhancing Social Studies Learning Through Student-Created Poetry,” how student-created formula poetry can be used in the primary grade social studies classroom. A variety of poetry types are shared along with examples written by students. She outlines benefits of poetry writing, which include deepening content understanding, strengthening academic vocabulary, and growing in content knowledge.
In a piece by Timothy J. Patterson and Jay M. Shuttleworth, “Teaching Hard History through Children’s Literature about Enslavement,” the authors offer a review of depictions of enslavement in children’s literature through an analytical framework that decodes the interpretive stances embedded in narratives about, and illustrations, of enslavement. They also outline an inquiry-based strategy to support elementary students’ close reading of books about enslavement.
In “Complicating ‘Master Historical Narratives’ with Primary Sources in a Fourth Grade Guided Inquiry,” an article by Jeremiah Clabough and John H. Bickford, the authors present the findings of a fourth grade study in which students exam ined primary sources and trade books about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Frederick Douglass, and issues that affected the African American community. They explain how fourth grade students used this research as the basis for evidence-based essays.
Eric Chandler Groce and Margaret Norville Gregor engage the reader in a though-provoking piece, “Destination Discrimination: Navigating the Highways of Segregated America with Trade Books.” They document how the advent of the automobile brought about opportunities as well as new challenges for black families seeking to sidestep racist practices during the Jim Crow era. This article reviews selected trade books, identifies pertinent themes associated with automobile travel, and discusses questions that will facilitate an intensive classroom exploration of this period of American history.
Enhancing Social Studies Learning Through Student-Created Poetry
Jennifer L. Altieri
Teaching Hard History through Children’s Literature
Timothy J. Patterson, Jay M. Shuttleworth
Complicating “Master Historical Narratives” with Primary Sources in a Fourth Grade Guided Inquiry
Jeremiah Clabough, John H. Bickford
Destination Discrimination: Navigating the Highways of Segregated America with Trade Books
Eric Chandler Groce, Margaret Norville Gregor