Moments in History: Remembering Thurgood Marshall

Few people know the legal mind of justices or judges as well as the law clerks who have worked with them. Justice Thurgood Marshall’s former law clerks offer unique insights into the character, values, and thought processes of the first African American to serve on the Supreme Court of the United States.  In this 8.5-minute video called “Moments in History:  Remembering Thurgood Marshall,” prominent lawyers reminisce about the examples of compassion and courage they saw in the life and work of this legal legend.  

  • Resource Type: Video
  • Subject:
  • Grades: 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Pathways to the Bench: African American History Month

Video profiles of seven African American federal judges, who overcame obstacles on their paths to the bench, are featured on the federal courts’ website. In their inspirational first-person narratives, they recount the challenges they faced growing up and offer uplifting insights. The four-minute videos are part of the federal courts’ Pathways to the Bench series.

  • Resource Type: Video
  • Subject: Judicial Branch/Supreme Court
  • Grades: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Black History Month Lesson Plans & Resources

This February, start your Black History Month lesson planning with Share My Lesson’s expanded collection. The Share My Lesson team has curated a collection of free lessons, worksheets, and activities for educators to use to teach preK-12 students about key events and individuals whose accomplishments continue to influence us today.

  • Resource Type: Interactives, Lesson Plans, Media, Modules (Teaching Unit)
  • Subject: Citizenship
  • Grades: K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Extending Suffrage to Women

In this activity, students will analyze documents pertaining to the women’s suffrage movement as it intensified following passage of the 15th Amendment, which guaranteed the right to vote for African American males. Documents were chosen to call attention to the struggle’s length, the movement’s techniques, and the variety of arguments for and against giving women the vote.

  • Resource Type: Primary Sources
  • Subject: Voting, Elections, Politics
  • Grades: 9, 10, 11, 12

Patriotism Crosses the Color Line: African Americans in World War II

Professor Clarence Taylor reminds us of the role African American soldiers played in the conflict—and the role their military service played in shaping the racial politics that followed in peacetime. Taken together, these essays help us appreciate the complexity of mobilization for modern warfare and drive home the impact of events on the world stage upon domestic affairs.

  • Resource Type: Essays, Primary Sources
  • Subject: Rights and Responsibilities
  • Grades: 9, 10, 11, 12

Breaking Barriers: Grades 3-5

This lesson is designed to be used in conjunction with the National Constitution Center’s Breaking Barriers show, which is available as part of themed museum packages for groups and the Traveling History & Civics Program for schools.

Together, they provide students with first-hand experience about how African-American individuals have broken barriers to racial integration in the United States, achieving equal rights and making lasting contributions to the country’s political, social and cultural development.

  • Resource Type: Lesson Plans
  • Subject: Rights and Responsibilities
  • Grades: 3, 4, 5

Breaking Barriers: Grades 6-8

This lesson is designed to be used in conjunction with the National Constitution Center’s Breaking Barriers show, which is available as part of themed museum packages for groups and the Traveling History & Civics Program for schools.

Together, they provide students with first-hand experience about how African-American individuals have broken barriers to racial integration in the United States, achieving equal rights and making lasting contributions to the country’s political, social and cultural development.

  • Resource Type: Lesson Plans
  • Subject: Rights and Responsibilities
  • Grades: 6, 7, 8

Breaking Barriers: Grades 9-12

This lesson is designed to be used in conjunction with the National Constitution Center’s Breaking Barriers show, which is available as part of themed museum packages for groups and the Traveling History & Civics Program for schools.

Together, they provide students with first-hand experience about how African-American individuals have broken barriers to racial integration in the United States, achieving equal rights and making lasting contributions to the country’s political, social and cultural development.

  • Resource Type: Lesson Plans
  • Subject: Rights and Responsibilities
  • Grades: 9, 10, 11, 12

Reconstructing a Nation

This unit provides a backdrop for the social, political, and economic changes that accompanied the Reconstruction amendments. A 30-minute video explains the events leading to Reconstruction, and introduces three individuals who played different roles — an African-American U.S. senator, a college-educated former plantation mistress, and a former Union Army officer who went to work for the Union Pacific Railroad. All dealt with upheaval and opportunity during this tumultuous period.

  • Resource Type: Closed Captions, Editorial Cartoons, Essays, Media, Primary Sources, Research (Digests of Primary Sources), Special Needs/Language Focus, Video
  • Subject: Citizenship
  • Grades: 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Thurgood

Thurgood is a production of the critically acclaimed one-man play starring Laurence Fishburne as Thurgood Marshall, a civil rights pioneer and the first African American to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court. The play recounts the milestones in the life and career of Marshall. Educators are required to register online to receive a personalized link to the video.

  • Resource Type: Video
  • Subject: Judicial Branch/Supreme Court
  • Grades: 8, 9, 10, 11, 12