Greensboro Sit-Ins Lesson Plan

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Greensboro Sit-Ins Lesson Plan

This lesson plan was written by Glen Axelson, Stephanie Fox, LeeAnn Riekehof, and Tameka Waters, and Toni Williamson.

This lesson is designed for an 8th grade EBT class, but could be modified for other grades as well.

Prior Knowledge: Students will complete a KWL Chart about their knowledge of the Greensboro Sit-ins. The teacher will read an excerpt from William Chafe’s book Civilities and Civil Rights; while teacher is reading the excerpt, there will be a slideshow of pictures from the sit-ins.

Essential Question: What’s the big deal about the Greensboro sit-ins?
North Carolina Goals/Objectives:

Social Studies:

5.05 Assess the influence of the political, legal, and social movements on the political system and life in North Carolina. ,

7.02 Evaluate the importance of social changes to different groups in North Carolina. .

9.02 Identify past and present state and local leaders from diverse cultural backgrounds and assess their influence in affecting change.

9.03 Describe opportunities for and benefits of civic participation.

Learning Activities:

    1. Students will be asked to volunteer in a Play about the Greensboro Sit-Ins entitled We Took Our Stand Sitting Down (see Teacher Made Handouts).

    2. Students will be given some Greensboro newspaper articles from the time period of the Sit Ins and split into groups to answer questions. Assign someone to be the reporter, reader, timekeeper, and recorder in each group. **Students will be given a handout with questions to answer from the articles. (see Teacher Made Handouts)

    3. Students will read a letter written by the Greensboro Four. They will write a response to the letter as part of their assessment. (see Teacher Made Handouts)

Assessment: After reading the letter written by one of the Greensboro Four, write your own letter in response to what you heard. Do it from the point of view of a university student at the time of the sit-ins. Make sure to include whether or not you agreed or disagreed with the Greensboro Four’s decision to protest. **Students will be given a handout with guidelines about the independent assignment including a rubric. (see Teacher Made Handouts)


Buy Other Merchandise (1960, February 3). Greensboro Daily News.

Chafe. W (1990). Civilities and Civil Rights: Greensboro, NC and the Struggle for Freedom. Oxford University Press

Greensboro Four Letter (no author)

Greensboro Historical Musem, (n.d.). The Greensboro sit-ins. Retrieved Oct. 15, 2005, from The Greensboro Sit-ins Web site:
Greensboro News & Record, Inc., (2003). Timeline of the Greensboro sit-ins. Retrieved Oct. 15, 2005, from Greensboro Sit Ins: Launch of a Civil Rights Movement Web site:
Greensboro News & Record, Inc, (2004). Greensboro sit-ins: launch of a civil rights movement. Retrieved Oct. 15, 2005, from Media Headlines Web site:

McFarland, S. (1989). We Took Our Stand Sitting Down

Negroes Fail to Obtain Service (1960, February 3). The Greensboro Daily News.

Not NAACP Inspired (1960, February 3). The Greensboro Daily News.

Student Strength Rises in Protest at Lunch Counter (1960, February 3). Greensboro Record.

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