Celebrate Juneteenth with These NCTE Resources

June 19th, also known as Juneteenth, is a significant day in American history that commemorates the emancipation of enslaved African Americans in the United States. On this day in 1865, Union General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas, to announce the freedom of all slaves in the state, more than two years after President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation. Today, Juneteenth is celebrated across the country with parades, music, food, and cultural events.

As educators, it is essential to incorporate the rich history and cultural significance of Juneteenth into our teaching practices. The National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) offers a wealth of resources to help teachers celebrate this important day with their students.

One valuable resource is the NCTE’s “Teaching Juneteenth” webpage, which provides a comprehensive guide to teaching about Juneteenth, including lesson plans, book lists, and multimedia resources. The page also features a collection of personal narratives and poetry that explore the experiences of enslaved people and their descendants.

Another resource is the NCTE’s “ReadWriteThink” website, which offers a range of interactive lesson plans and activities that can be adapted to different grade levels. For example, the “Juneteenth: Freedom’s Promise” lesson plan encourages students to analyze primary sources and create their own freedom poems.

In addition, the NCTE’s “Voices from the Middle” journal has published several articles and essays on teaching about Juneteenth, including “Teaching Juneteenth: A Call to Action” and “Juneteenth: A Celebration of Freedom and Resilience.” These articles provide valuable insights and practical strategies for incorporating Juneteenth into the classroom.

By utilizing these NCTE resources, teachers can create engaging and meaningful lessons that help students understand the significance of Juneteenth and its relevance to American history and culture. So, let’s celebrate Juneteenth with our students and foster a deeper appreciation for the struggles and triumphs of African Americans.

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