using Let the Children March in speech therapy

Frequent Speech Sounds:

/ch/ initial and final
/m/ initial
/ar/

Themes:

Black History Month
perseverance
desegregation
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Book Details:

Diverse Characters: Yes
Age Recommendation: Elementary, Late Elementary, Middle School

Let the Children March

By Monica Clark-Robinson

In 1963 Birmingham, Alabama, thousands of African American children volunteered to march for their civil rights after hearing Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. speak. They protested the laws that kept black people separate from white people. Facing fear, hate, and danger, these children used their voices to change the world. Frank Morrison's emotive oil-on-canvas paintings bring this historical event to life, while Monica Clark-Robinson's moving and poetic words document this remarkable time.

This empowering Black History Month book can be used in speech therapy to address social/emotional issues like segregation, persistence, and standing up for what you believe in. It is also great for noticing character expressions and for targeting comparing and contrasting as well as for figurative language, character analysis, and negation! Discover more of the speech and language teaching concepts for using Let the Children March in speech therapy below: 

Key Teaching concepts

Narrative Structure:

complete episode
historical fiction
expository text

Narrative Concepts:

sequencing
vocabulary
character analysis
social/emotional
comparing/contrasting
figurative language
negation
verbs (actions)
verbs (regular past tense)
verbs (auxiliary)
text features
theme/message
inferencing
predicting
illustration study

Sequencing:

order of events that let to children marching and desegregation

Vocabulary:

crusade, inauguration, segregation, protest, authorize, escalate, agreement, demonstrators, burden, freedom, disperse, overcome, fierce, tide, revolution

Character Analysis:

The courageous children in Birmingham, Alabama stood up for their right to freedom by peacefully marching despite resistance from whites and authority figures.

Social/Emotional:

segregation
persistence
standing up for what you believe in
fear
bravery
facial expressions
comparing/contrasting life before and after the march

Figurative Language:

idioms (the weight of the world rested on our parents’ shoulders, turn the other cheek)
similes (my smile was as wide as the Mississippi river, we felt it (change) like a cool breeze in an Alabama August)
personification (courage walked by my side and kept me going)
metaphors (brown eyes flashing fire and love, wrapped in the proud and loving arms of our ancestors)

Grammar:

negation
verbs (actions)
verbs (regular past tense)
verbs (auxiliary)

Text Features:

timeline
italics
dialogue
moving text
large font
capitals

Inferencing:

How do you think the families felt about protesting?
What did they think was going to happen?
How did the children feel about stepping up?
What did Dr. King think about the children marching?
What do you think they were thinking about?
Why were there angry faces in the crowd?
How did Dr. King help the parents?
How did the community react to more children marching?
How do you think the children felt in jail?
How do you think they felt about the news of desegregation?

Predicting:

What do you think is going to happen when they march?
What do you think they will do when the police tell them to stop?
What do you think will happen to the children in jail?
What do you think President Kennedy will do?
What do you think might change after the march?