Shoulders of the Ancestors

February 2016

The reason I appear to be standing so tall is because my feet are firmly planted on the shoulders of my ancestors

African American History Month 2016

Hallowed Grounds: Sites of African American Memories

The Association for the Study of African American Life & History has selected as the annual theme for 2016 Hallowed Grounds: Sites of African American Memories. This

themes was elected to bring attention to the centennial celebration of the National Park Service and the more than twenty-five sites and the Underground Railroad Network to Freedom that are part of America’s hallowed grounds, including the home of the father of black history, Dr. Carter G. Woodson.

Equal Justice Initiative Director Bryan Stevenson (right) with actor Chris Chalk (lef) from the critically acclaimed film 12 Years a Slave at the unveiling of a historic marker in Montgomery, Alabama. CLICK IMAGE ABOVE for more details about the event.

Websites Featuring Martin Luther King & Civil Rights Movement

As Martin Luther King Jr. Day is recognized in your classes an excellent question to pose to students is: "Did the man make the movement or did the movement make the man?".  Did MLK create the Civil Right Movement or did the Civil Rights Movement create MLK? Addressing that question and any serious examination of the Civil Rights Movement should include a visit to the BIRMINGHAM CIVIL RIGHTS INSTITUTE.


The KING CENTER in Atlanta, Georgia maintains exhibitions and collections of artifacts and memorabilia on display to the public, and has numerous resources on MLK and the Civil Rights Movement.


Consider visiting the Western Michigan University center TEACH MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. The center is dedicated to helping teachers continue the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by addressing civil rights, inequality, racism, poverty and world peace in their curricula.

The RETHINKING SCHOOLS site focuses on MLK's Letter from a Birmingham Jail as it critiques some problems with Common Core's emphasis on the Close Reading strategy.


In recognition of the recent passing of anti-apartheid activist Nelson Mandela, the ZINN EDUCATION PROJECT is featuring an article Our House Divided: What U.S. Schools Don’t Teach About U.S.-Style Apartheid.


Listed below are additional useful  MLK and Civil Rights Movement resources and/or lesson plans:











SELMA: The Bridge to the Ballot

Teachers can order this kit for free.


The Kit includes:

40-minute film with closed-captioning on DVD

Teacher’s Guide with five lesson plans on CD

A timeline of activities and events associated with the marches

This film tells the story of a courageous group of students and teachers who, along with other activists, fought a nonviolent battle to win voting rights for African Americans in the South. By organizing and marching bravely in the face of intimidation, violence, arrest and even murder, these change-makers achieved one of the most significant victories of the civil rights era.


Relive the memories of old school (and some new school) hip-hop. Through iconic images and carefully researched text that is suitable for the classroom, the Hip Hop History Posters are always a catalyst for discussions with students, friends, or family. Engage young people in a topic that interests them.


CIVIL WAR: Educational Posters

Through primary source images and with text students will learn about President Lincoln's initial reluctance to recruit African Americans, the contributions of runaway slaves, and how African Americans contributed to the Union's victory over the Confederacy.


SHOULDERS OF THE ANCESTORS is a division of AFRICAN AMERICAN POSTERS & PRESENTATIONS (AAPP) . AAPP provides classroom tested educational posters and learning charts that utilize the new scholarship in African and African American history and culture. The graphics on our learning charts are selected to engage students. Visit us today at www.aahistoryposters.com.


This educational kit contains four full color posters and a CD with a Powerpoint presentation.