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Sunday, January 8, 2012

HISTORhYmes (1-2-Week Poetry & Literacy Activity)

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HISTORhYmes is a 1-2-week literacy activity that enhances reading comprehension, grammar, and writing skills by using the creative imaginations of young people to present stories about historical and contemporary figures. The activity also incorporates supporting elements of the performing arts, entrepreneurship, and computer & Internet literacy.

Students are surveyed about their personal interests, and are then provided biographies of people whose life stories can simultaneously mentor and inspire the students.

The students are then asked to retell the biography using various forms of creative expression (poems, monologues, skits, rhymes, etc.). For example, during a previous activity we explored the differing views and philosophies of W.E.B. DuBois and Booker T. Washington. We also explored how their experiences shaped their clashing views on African-American advancement and empowerment after the abolishment of slavery.

W.E.B. and Booker T.

 (By Kwame' Baldwin, Gerzzell Carter, Tia Moreland, Ricky White, Jimmie Fair, and Derrick Brown)

(Chorus 1) W.E.B.
Founded the NAACP
'Cause he had a beef with Booker T.
'Bout how Black folks could be free

(Chorus 2) Now Booker T.
Wrote "Up From Slavery"
Used the money to fund Tuskegee
To create our Black bourgeoisie

W.E.B. called the "few and the bold"
To impart wisdom to the young and the old
Perhaps this theory is a bit oversold
'Cause are we really free, or have we just been paroled?

(Repeat Chorus 1, Chorus 2)

Now Booker T. said, "To lift up a man,
You take him from 'I can't' and teach him to say 'I can'
Teach him how to fish, put him down with the plan"
But does my business sense make me more than "less than"?

(Repeat Chorus 1, Chorus 2)

Copyright © 2020 Derrick  Brown. All Rights Reserved.

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