Nonfiction Monday was started by Anastasia Suen and is hosted this week at Wrapped in Foil.
Levinson, Cynthia. We've Got a Job: The 1963 Birmingham Children's March
March 28th 2012 by Peachtree Publishers
EARC provided by Netgalley.com
This is exactly why Black History Month was started; so much history involving the Civil Rights Movement never makes it to school curriculums. Certainly in the 1970s, we could have learned about school integration in the South, but I don’t think we even got as far as the Cold War! While I knew about Little Rock, and the bombings in Birmingham, I had never heard of the Children’s March that occurred in May of 1963. Children and teens learned about nonviolent protest, and even signed an agreement that they would remain nonviolent, then left school in order to march. They were arrested in droves and had fire hoses turned on them and dogs set on them. Some Civil Rights leaders, including Malcolm X, felt that this was an improper thing to do. This book is told from the points of view of four children from various backgrounds who were involved in the March, and so has good details about what it was like to live through this. Combined with the other activities at the time, this march helped to bring about the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
Strengths: The set up of this book is great for middle school students—pictures are interspersed with text, and including the experiences of real people instead of just a general overview is something that will appeal to students.
Weaknesses: Before I purchase e books, nonfiction is going to have to be better formatted for this platform. I read an EARC of this, and had to reduce the print size to small so that the pictures would appear. Maybe my eye sight is getting worse than I imagine, because it was very difficult to read this way.