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A Teacher’s Guide for Grades 9-12:

March Trilogy

This graphic memoir tells the story of John Lewis, a strong, passionate, resilient young man who rises to the center of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s and eventually becomes a U.S. Congressman. This book is John’s story, but it is also the story of the movement. We chose this book for its careful exploration of timely social and emotional themes: resilience in the face of oppression, perseverance, activism, racism, violence, and solidarity. This curriculum will inspire students to build connections between John’s quest for social justice and their own role as citizens today.

March is a graphic novel trilogy that tells the story of John Lewis’ life. When John was a child, he wanted to be a preacher; instead, he applied his love of people, his strong moral compass, and his knack for public speaking to becoming an activist. John grew up in Alabama, in the Jim Crow South. He witnessed rampant inequality beginning at a young age; when he was old enough, he decided to fight it. The trilogy focuses mostly on Lewis’ past, but also moves back and forth to the year 2009, when Lewis, now a U.S. Congressman, is preparing for the inauguration of America’s first black president. In Book 1, John describes sit-ins and the creation of Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), the organization he later led. In Book 2, John details his involvement with the Freedom Riders, who fought for integration on buses and at bus stations, often encountering violence and imprisonment, even, sometimes, death. In Book 3, John focuses on the suffrage movement in Selma, Alabama. Throughout his journey, John resists the weight of oppression and renews his commitment to fighting injustice through non-violence.

A graphic novel series by:  John Lewis, Andrew Aydin and Nate Powell

Our Reading with Relevance teacher’s guide breaks the novel into a series of thoughtful lesson plans. Each lesson is designed to support you to meaningfully explore the social and emotional themes of the day’s reading with your students, inspiring them to read deeply, think critically, talk openly, and write reflectively about topics that matter.

This teacher’s guide includes:

  • A facilitator’s guide with tips and resources for implementing the curriculum.
  • A map of Common Core Standards addressed through this program.
  • Fourteen individual lesson plans, including vocabulary, discussion questions, journal prompts, extension activities, and all handouts.
  • Two assessments to monitor student progress throughout the program.
  • Regular checkpoints to help teachers assess their students’ progress on ELA standards.
  • A culminating essay-writing unit.
  • An appendix with additional teaching resources and activities to continue exploring this novel.

Pages: 100
Dimensions: 8.5” x 11”



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