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Back To Africa Lesson Plan
Overview
Colonization and Emigration explores the migration of African Americans to other lands in the search for freedom and equality. The migration during the late Eighteenth and Nineteenth centuries was the result of the resounding belief that the only way to achieve equal access in society was to establish separate, self-governing societies or nations. The colonization and emigration movement was very controversial and, in some respects, created negative consequences for African Americans. This lesson will provide students the opportunity to examine the phenomenon and to analyze the arguments supporting the migration of African Americans to other countries in the search for equality.
Grade Levels:High school, grades 11-12
For use with:Colonization and Emigration
Concentration Area:History: U.S. Government
National Curriculum Standards met by this lesson
The standards for this lesson conform to those set by the Mid-continent Research for Education and Learning (McRel).
Students will understand

  • Massive immigration after 1850 and how new social patterns, conflicts, and ideas of national unity developed amid growing cultural diversity.
  • The challenges diverse people encountered in late 19th-century American society (e.g., the role of new laws and the federal judiciary in instituting racial inequality; arguments and methods by which various minority groups sought to acquire equal rights and opportunities; experiences of African-American families who migrated from the South to New York City in the 1890s).
  • How Progressives and others addressed problems of industrial capitalism, urbanization, and political corruption.
  • How the Progressive movement influenced different groups in American society (e.g., counter-Progressive programs of labor organizations compared to social democratic programs in industrial Europe, the response of mainstream Progressives to women's issues, the changing perception of Native-American assimilation under Progressivism, the founding of the NAACP, how African-American women contributed to the movement, how the International Ladies Garment Workers Union provided alternatives, the success of the Progressive movement to groups outside the mainstream).
  • The struggle for racial and gender equality and for the extension of civil liberties.
  • Significant influences on the Civil Rights Movement (e.g., the social and constitutional issues involved in Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) and Brown v. Board of Education (1954) court cases; the connection between legislative acts, Supreme Court decisions, and the Civil Rights Movement; the role of women in the Civil Rights Movement and in shaping the struggle for civil rights).
Time required
Two to three 50-minute class periods
Materials needed
Anticipatory Set

  1. Have students read the following statement and decide how they feel about it. Then, ask them to line up based on their views using the Line-up Strategy below.

  2. "Colonization and Emigration to lands outside of the United States is the only way African Americans will achieve true freedom and equality."
  3. After students have decided how they feel about the statement and have placed themselves on the continuum, split the line in the middle and move the students into pairs for discussion. See the diagram below.
  4. Give each student two minutes to explain his or her opinion on the topic. After the two minutes, the partners should reverse roles for another two minutes.
  5. After the students have had an opportunity to listen to other points of view, give them the opportunity to line up again. Students who change their opinions should explain to the class the rationale for the change.
  6. Then, explain to students that they will be examining a time period in our nation's history when African Americans felt that the only way to achieve true freedom and equality was to build colonies in other countries and to emigrate from the United States.
Procedures

  1. Provide each student a copy of the narrative Colonization and Emigration. Then, explain that the narrative will provide the basic information students will need to engage in a "historical panel" discussion with individuals in support of the colonization and emigration movement.
  2. Explain that some students will assume the role of one of the significant individuals from the time period, while other students will act as either a moderator for the discussion, press secretaries for the significant individuals, or reporters trying to gain information for a newspaper story on the movement. Then, hand out the Roles and Tasks for Panel Discussion.
  3. Organize students into the various roles and provide time for them to read the narrative and complete the tasks related to their role. Group those students not assigned a specific role with a reporter or significant individual to help them complete the tasks.
  4. Organize the room to facilitate the panel discussion.
  5. Then, have the student moderator start the panel discussion by introducing the significant individuals and facilitating the panel discussion.
  6. After the panel discussion, debrief the information with students and have them list the major emigration and colonization movements, the significant individuals, and the major arguments for colonization and emigration. Use the Panel Discussion Review, below.
  7. Once the class has finished debriefing, revisit the statement from the "Anticipatory Set" . Once again, have students line up according to their views on the topic following the panel discussion. Randomly select students to explain their viewpoints and whether their views had changed as a result of the class activity.
Assessment

As an assessment, have students develop a flyer or newspaper advertisement for African-American emigration and colonization. The flyer should detail the key advantages of the migration as well as the rationale for the relocation movement.

Back To Africa Lesson



Line-Up Strategy

  1. Students should decide how they feel about a topic or statement and line up in a single line according to the following continuum:

    1. Strongly Agree
    2. Agree
    3. Neutral
    4. Disagree
    5. Strongly Disagree
  2. After the students line up, the teacher should split the line and move students into pairs to discuss their opinions.

Back To Africa Lesson



Roles and Tasks for Panel Discussion

Role Task
Paul Cuffee



American Colonization Society (ACS) Member

James Theodore Holly

Martin R. Delany

Rev. Henry Highland Garnett

Marcus Garvey
The student assigned this role should gather information related to the individual's view on the topic and should take on the "persona" of the person during the panel discussion. The student should be able to answer the questions posed by the reporters related to the topic of African-American emigration and colonization.
Press Secretary for Paul Cuffee



American Colonization Society (ACS) Member

James Theodore Holly

Martin R. Delany

Rev. Henry Highland Garnet

Marcus Garvey
The press secretary should help prepare for the panel discussion. During the panel discussion, the press secretary will stand behind the individual and help in answering questions posed by the reporters.
Panel Discussion Moderator The moderator should be prepared to introduce each of the panel members, facilitate the panel discussion, keep the discussion going, and maintain established time limits, if necessary.
Three Reporters The reporters should develop specific questions for the panel. The questions should be crafted to elicit significant information related to the colonization and emigration movement. Student reporters should develop questions independently. Reporters must also be prepared to ask follow-up questions after panel member responses.
Students Not Assigned Specific Roles Students not assigned specific roles for the panel discussion should partner with one of the groups preparing for the activity and assist in the development and preparation for the discussion. During the discussion, these students will be part of the general audience attending the panel discussion.

Back To Africa Lesson



Panel Discussion Review

Major Colonization and Emigration Movements Key Arguments in Support of Colonization and Emigration Movements Significant Individuals Connected to the Colonization and Emigration Movement
Alternate Discussion Arrangement to the One Charted Out:

The teacher could move the "neutral" students to the end of the line and have them discuss the topic with a student with a stronger opinion.

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