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MIDDLE SCHOOL WRITING PROMPTS
• February 2015 •

Create a Web Entry as an African American Icon

February is Black History Month, an annual celebration that has existed, in some form, as early as 1926. During the second week of February, Dr. Carter G. Woodson, organized the first annual Negro History Week, which evolved in the 1960s into Black History Month, a four-week-long tribute to African American History.

During the 1950s and 1960s, important legislation was passed to give African Americans more opportunities in the United States. An instrumental force in the Civil Rights Movement was the Bus Boycott in Montgomery, Alabama. Rosa Parks became the well-known face of the boycott when she refused to give up her seat to a white man on the bus. After a year of demonstrating, the Supreme Court eventually passed a law desegregating the public buses in Alabama.

On January 20, 2009, Barack Obama became the first African-American president and the 44th president of the United States. His accomplishment would not have been possible without the struggles and contributions of the many African Americans who came before him.

Using reference materials at a library or an Internet search engine, research an African American who is considered an icon for his or her accomplishments in civil rights, politics, or entertainment. Learn about his or her achievements. Then, imagine that you are that individual. Based on your research, write a Web entry of your experiences that you would want students your age to read and learn from. Consider, but do not limit yourself to, the following while writing your entry:

  • What lessons could students learn from your experiences?
  • Teach them an appreciation of the sacrifices and heroics that people made in order to achieve equality.
  • Keeping in mind all that you have learned from your research, tell them your greatest hopes for their generation.

Once you have finished your Web entry, share it with your classmates by posting it on your class or school Web site.