Gerald Sternberg
Social Studies
Material Type:
Interactive, Primary Source, Reading
High School
  • African American History
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    Media Formats:
    Audio, Downloadable docs, Interactive

    1.05 Visual History and Visual Media Showcasing the Strength, Perseverance and Oppression of African Americans Across Time

    1.05 Visual History and Visual Media Showcasing the Strength, Perseverance and Oppression of African Americans Across Time


    This Resource includes films covering topics such as historical events, social justice, documentaries,

    slave narratives, materials on PBS Learning Media for all grades, which includes free curated

    standards-aligned videos, interactives and lesson plans and contains grade level topics of interest.

    This Resource also contains the Smithsonian NAAHC "Civil Rights History Project." There are also

    various audiovisual resources on Wisconsin African American History and "Women of the





    1.05 Visual History and Visual Media Showcasing the Strength, Perseverance and Oppression of African Americans Across Time

    1.05 Visual History and Visual Media Showcasing the Strength, Perseverance and

    Oppression of African Americans Across Time


    Grade Level

    Resource(s) & Content

    Teacher discretion based on film rating and content

    (American Film Association ratings for films are provided.)

    Film Appendix including titles based on the United States Library of Congress, the American Film Institute Archives and the Education Committee input.

    See Appendix A for film descriptions.  Movies cover topics such as: 

    1. Historical Events/Legal Milestones
    2. Social Justice & Inter/Intra-racial issues
    3. Famous and/ or Notable People

    Teacher discretion based on film rating and content

    Eric Foner- “Voices of Freedom:  A Documentary History”, Volumes 1 and 2.

    "Voices of Freedom" is the only reader with a thematic  focus on American Freedom. It is both in print and e-book formats.

    Teacher discretion based on content

    “Found Voices” - Slave Narratives Part I, Aug. 2011 and Part II, Feb. 2015 by Eyefletch, originally produced on Nightline in 1999, now on You Tube, produced by ABC News.

    Teacher discretion based on content

    "Born in Slavery" Collection“ Slave Narratives- Produced by Federal Writers' Project and aired on Aug. 4, 2007. Collected 1936-38, more than 2,300 1st person accounts and 500 black and white photos. At

    Teacher discretion based on content

    Civil Rights Movement Timeline: History Channel – Video with comprehensive but brief timeline dating from Jim Crow Laws through the Civil Rights Movement.

    Teacher discretion based on content

    We Teach NYC: “Collection for Black History Month” (can be adapted for yearlong learning).  The collection provides primary sources, lessons, articles, videos and legislation passed due to the Civil Rights Movement.  Lesson Plans and guides are included as well as four films by the Equal Film Project:

    “The Abolitionists”, “Slavery by Another Name”, “The Loving Story”, and “Freedom Riders”.




    Teacher discretion based on content. Primarily for grades


    "Unchained Memories-Readings from the Slave Narratives"-DVD-Documentary Available through Teach with an award for Best by this Organization-Includes Discussion Guide, worksheets and projects.  Appropriate for grades 8-12. Targets social and emotional  learning with a moral  and ethical emphasis. Teaches students to write narratives.

    Teacher discretion based on content

    Video featuring actress, Alfre Woodard. Ms. Woodard performs a moving piece from abolition and women’s rights originally delivered by former slave Sojourner Truth in 1851, entitled "Aint I a Woman."

    All Grades


    PBS Learning Media: PBS and PBS Wisconsin have FREE curated, standards-aligned videos, interactives, lesson plans in all subject areas.

    Teachers indicate subject (social studies/history in this case), grade level and topics of interest, for example: Civil Rights, Reconstruction, Civil War, slavery, the story of Black Colleges and Universities, etc. This site has a remarkable, varied collection of African American History resources for all grade levels. This is an invaluable resource.



    Houghton, Mifflin, Harcourt, HMH virtual field trips plus Google Expeditions, virtual 3-D, 360. Download Teacher Guide Sampler under U.S. History. 

    High School and some middle school classes

    Houghton, Mifflin & Harcourt Publishing, African American History, by  Grant-Britton and Teacher Guide both available in hard copy and online.

    "Confronting Racism is online only. Confronting Racism is more for high school students, it appears.

    Some pre-K but most are for grades 3,5,6,8,9 & 12

    Scholastic Teachables: “Change: Black History in America”.  Some areas are even geared for pre-K but most are for grades 3,5,6,8,9.12.

    “Students will discover history as they meet famous African Americans.  This resource contains computer lab activities, features interviews, historical sketches and interactive activities.  Dark Sky Rising: Reconstruction and the Dawn of Jim Crow by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (Hard Cover)

    Grades K-5 , 6-8 and 9-12



    High School Students>


    NEA – Black History Month Lessons and Resources on “Integrating African-American Culture and History into Your Curriculum” by Phil Nast.  Lesson plans, activities, background resources, arts, science, and sports are provided.  Additionally, quizzes, crosswords, videos and printables are included.


    Videos:  "Legacy of Black and White in America”, “The Black Press- Soldiers without Swords”, by PBS, “The Untold Story of Black New Orleans” – Faubourg Treme.  There are units on musical Harlem, dance, jazz, poetry, culture and change, scientists, inventors, and visual arts.

    Grades 4 -12


    Smithsonian NMAAHC - Staff at NMAAHC share their interpretation of the collections of stories they find most powerful from a variety of perspectives. 


    Examples: “The Marvelous Musical Prodigy”, “The Woman with the Violin”, “Carl Lewis”, “Seeing Black Women in Power”, and “The Evidence of Things Unsaid”.


    Grades 4 & 5


    PBS Learning Media: "Dream Big Dreams" - Documentary tells the story of Wisconsin Civil Rights activist Vel Phillips and her struggles to build a better community.

    Comes with Interactive and Teaching Guide (See Wisconsin Notable Persons).


    Grades 5-12

    Teachers First Website: “Thinking Teachers Teaching Thinkers”.

    Although produced by the Georgia Department of Education, a lot of the material is national history, and parts specifically to Georgia can be adapted to our own Wisconsin Resistance Movements.

    The material transports students to the time of the Civil Rights Movement through virtual learning experiences and first-hand accounts.  There are 14 videos for different grade levels. 

    Moreover, the material available via text, images, audio, and video encourages interactivity and empowers learners to explore at their own pace and promotes “a feeling of presence”.

    Georgia Public Broadcasting –

    Grades 6-12

    Smithsonian NMAAHC – “Civil Rights History Project” with the Library of Congress.  Personal histories and testimonials bear witness to unsung activists of the 1950’s and 1960’s.  People who made valuable contributions to the movement but are unknown and often put themselves and their families in danger to organize voter drives, provide food, housing, and money.

    Grade 9 - 12

    PBS Learning Media: African American History Detectives.  Includes lesson plans, video and activity pack.

    Grade 9-12

    "African American History in Wisconsin" -

    Web Article outlines the history of African American presence in Wisconsin as far back as 1725. African Americans accompanied French and British fur traders on their voyages to the U.S. and throughout Wisconsin history. During the fur trade, there were 500 Black slaves in the Wisconsin region, although not all blacks were enslaved

    Grade 9-12

    "March on Milwaukee" by Margaret Rozga - A comprehensive telling of the March on Milwaukee on August 28, 1967, when over 100 members of the Milwaukee Youth

    Council & the NAACP, led by Father James E. Groppi protested for Fair Housing in Milwaukee. UWM Digital Collection Libraries

    Grade 9-12

    "When Hell Freezes Over: The Fighting Priest, Father James Groppi" - Documentary made by Milwaukee Filmmaker Kevin Rutkowski for Studio 11thstory- 2020. Found on YouTube. (2 hours 8 minutes)


    Grade 9-12

    Women of the Movement” is an American three-part historical drama miniseries that premiered on ABC on January 6, 2022. Created and written by Marissa Jo Cerar and directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood, the series centers on Mamie Till-Mobley, played by Adrienne Warren, who devoted her life to seeking justice for her murdered son Emmett, played by Cedric Joe. Tonya Pinkins also co-stars as Alma Carthan, Emmett's grandmother.

    The series is based on the book Emmett Till: The Murder That Shocked the World and Propelled the Civil Rights Movement by Devery S. Anderson. In August 2021 during post-production, the book Death of Innocence: The Story of the Hate Crime That Changed America by Mamie Till-Mobley and Christopher Benson, was also added to the project. Currently (3-1-22), this series is available on Hulu Plus. You are also able to stream “Women of the Movement” by renting or purchasing on Vudu.

    Grade 12

    PBS Independent Lens - “Birth of a Movement: The Battle Against America's First Blockbuster” is an historical documentary that tells the little-known story of William Monroe Trotter, a fire-breathing editor of a Boston black newspaper who helped launch a nationwide movement in 1915 to ban a flagrantly racist film, The Birth of a Nation.

    Advanced Placement or Honors Class 

    Eric Foner’s online courses on “The Civil War and Reconstruction” (2014) are available from Columbia University on Columbia X.  He received the Pulitzer Prize for History.