Teach for Black Lives

Let’s make teaching for Black lives the norm, not the exception.

When we reject racism and anti-Blackness in our teaching, equip our students with information about the truth of our history and engage them in critical self-reflection, we help them access their own power to define their roles in the world.

Explore the links below to find everything you need to build a toolkit to advocate for Black lives in your schools and classrooms, starting with the book, Teaching for Black Lives.

Teaching Resources

Teaching for Black Lives Book

Rooted in the Black Lives Matter movement, this book provides resources and demonstrates how teachers can connect curriculum to young people’s lives and root their concerns and daily experiences in what is taught and how classrooms are set up.

Get the book >>
Find supplemental resources >>

Study Groups

Facilitated by the Zinn Education Project, study groups are a free professional learning opportunity open to teachers across the United States. Study group participants can dive deeper into Teaching for Black Lives and create action plans to share with their teaching community.

Learn about the groups >>

Apply to form a study group >>

Lessons

The Zinn Education Project offers dozens of lessons on the history of the Black Freedom Struggle — from resistance to enslavement to redlining to the ongoing fight for voting rights and reparations. Find highlighted collections of lessons at the Teach Truth Syllabus, Teach the Roots of the 2020 RebellionPeople’s History Lessons for Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You, and Teaching with the New York Times 1619 Project.

Online Classes

Our “Teaching the Black Freedom Struggle” online classes offer the chance to learn directly from leading historians and to meet peers from across the country. In each session, a historian is interviewed by a teacher, and participants break into small groups to meet each other, discuss the content, and share teaching ideas. Sessions are designed for teachers and other school staff — but parents, students, and others are also welcome to participate.

Learn about classes >>

Teaching for Black Lives Podcast

The forthcoming Teaching for Black Lives Podcast will provide both the historical context and pedagogical strategies for educators to teach about the ongoing Black Freedom Struggle. This podcast will feature educators who have designed and implemented dynamic lessons, as well as leading historians of African American history.

Additional Resources

In addition to the book, Teaching for Black Lives, Rethinking Schools offers a number of other titles to support educators in pursuit of racial justice, such as Teaching a People’s History of Abolition and the Civil War, Rethinking Ethnic Studies, Rethinking Mathematics, Rhythm and Resistance, Reading, Writing, and Rising Up, and more.

Learn More >>

Teacher Stories

Teach the Black Freedom Struggle Class Anniversary

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On the two-year anniversary of Zinn Education Project’s Teach the Black Freedom Struggle online classes, we express our appreciation to the educators, scholars, students, organizers, and advocates for teaching people’s history…
Crowd of young brown people carrying protest signs

The People’s History They Don’t Want Our Students to Know

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As you know, the right-wing attacks on racial justice teaching have become more shrill, more frightening. But despite claims of “political indoctrination” — or worse — specific descriptions of problematic teaching are…

I Loved Everything!

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The comment is from one of the Teaching for Black Lives study group member’s evaluation of our workshop in January of 2022.  Jesse Hagopian facilitated a planning session for study…

Fugitive Pedagogy

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The Zinn Education Project hosted Dr. Jarvis Givens, author of Fugitive Pedagogy: Carter G. Woodson and the Art of Black Teaching. Givens shared with the audience of mostly-teachers the story…
Screenshot of a zoom meeting, grid of smiling faces at a workshop

100 Teaching for Black Lives Study Groups Launch in 2021-2022 School Year

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In September of 2021, 100 Teaching for Black Lives study groups were selected, received copies of Teaching for Black Lives, attended orientation sessions, and began meeting. Here are a few…
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