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Not Your Momma's History

Programs on Slavery

Enrich your curriculum with a visit from one of our experienced interpreters.  NYMH's school programs are designed to develop empathy in young students, and introduce them to the lives of American enslaved persons.  All of our programs are based on the Common Core State Standards and the New York State Learning Standards.  If you are interested in setting up a program for your class please contact us here.

Each 45 to 60 minute program includes a hands on activity.  

Shorten'in Bread: An Interactive Experience

Toddlers to Preschool

Costumed Interpreter, 25-40 minutes, hands-on craft activity included

A costumed historical interpreter will use early African American storytelling, touch objects and music to engage young learners and introduce them to 'call and response' songs and fables. 

From Igboland to America: The Journey of the African to Colonial America

Ages 8+ (Each program is adapted to grade, curriculum, and region.)

Costumed Interpreter, 45 minute program

Students will explore some of the different ethnolinguistic groups of Nigeria, Benin and Ghana.  Our interpreter will guide the students through the religions, governments and industries of these regions using artifacts, touch objects and maps.  Through slave sale ads, runaway ads and bill of sales students will be able to see how Africans helped to build and shape America while fighting to maintain their culture and familial ties. 

Roll, Jordan Roll: An Introduction to American Slavery

3rd Grade

Costumed Interpreter, 45 minute program

This program was created as an introduction to American slavery for young students, by introducing them to the enslaved community through the words of the enslaved. Through narratives, music, images, touch objects and letters, students will be introduced to a people who were more than their status as slaves.  Students will be able to identify certain aspects of the culture that the enslaved Africans brought with them to North America, understand the internal customs and hierarchy of the enslaved community, and identify the hopes and dreams of some of these enslaved persons.

Read 'Em John: The World of the Enslaved

4th to 6th Grade

Costumed Interpreter, 45 minute program

Through the use of primary sources, visual aids and reproductions our interpreters will walk the students through the world of the enslaved person. This program is designed to introduce students to the everyday life of enslaved persons through age appropriate excerpts from narratives, letters and runaway slave ads.  Students will be able to list a few traits of American slavery, describe the daily life of an enslaved worker, understand what struggles enslaved persons faced, and list some of the ways in which enslaved persons cared for the physical and emotional needs of family and friends. 

Oh Freedom! The Fight for Abolition

7th & 8th Grade

45 minute program, hands-on activity included

Every abolitionist had their own reasons for fighting for the end of slavery and different ideas of how to end the institution.  This program will use the stories, works and methods of four abolitionist to show how and why these Americans fought for the end of slavery.  Primary Source materials such as age appropriate excerpts from books, illustrations, photographs, articles and advertisements, will help students to better understand these complicated individuals.