A Monumental History

A Monumental History

Monuments designed to honor places, events, or people stand in public places across the United States. Some, such as the Lincoln Memorial and the Statue of Liberty, are classic icons. Others, such as the 2,000-pound African Killer Bee located in Hidalgo, Texas, are less than traditional. Monuments are often controversial. What is honorable to one person may be offensive to another. Also, the meanings of monuments change as the culture around them evolves. What do monuments reveal about the history,...
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Does Racial Inequality Exist in Your School?

Does Racial Inequality Exist in Your School?

From Changing Laws

It can sometimes be hard to recognize racial inequality when it doesn’t directly affect you. Take a look at the statistics relating to your own school and see if anything surprised you.



From Singing for Equality

Music of the Civil Rights Era arose from several different styles of music, most notably gospel, folk, blues, and jazz. What did these different styles offer? How did they combine to form music that was completely new?

Planning a Boycott

Planning a Boycott

From Boycotts, Strikes, and Marches

Segregated buses and trains were only one of the ways whites discriminated against African Americans in the Jim Crow South. A boycott is the act of refusing to buy, use, or participate in something as a form of protest. Why didn’t the African American community use boycotts more often in their fight against segregation?

Civil Rights Issues Today

Civil Rights Issues Today

From Sitting In, Standing Up

For as long as there has been a United States, there have been debates about civil rights. What civil rights issues are people concerned about today? Let’s find out!



Skipping Stones Honor Award 2022

Skipping Stones Award Seal

School Library Connection
“Readable, thought-provoking, and featuring an extensive glossary of terms, this title would be a worthy addition to library shelves, to classrooms where students are encouraged to delve more deeply into content, and to institutions where History Day on a state and/or national level is emphasized. An excellent volume.”

School Library Journal
“This history resource chronicles the period following the Civil War. The text tries to analyze the time period within the context of current events and show how the missteps of the past have impacted the present. Each chapter begins with a comic strip of a young Black woman and her grandmother, who discuss racism and America’s legacy of white supremacy. The 'Inquire & Investigate' series urges students to delve deeper into topics and provides sample assignments. VERDICT An excellent update to titles that detail this time period; students will be able to put history into perspective.”

Praise for other titles by Judy Dodge Cummings:

The Underground Railroad Navigate the Journey from Slavery to Freedom
Lower Columbia Review Group (LCRG) STARRED REVIEW
". . .Though the subject matter is very specific, The Underground Railroad: Navigate the Journey from Slavery to Freedom is an excellent text to have."

School Library Connections
". . . This book is an excellent resource for helping students understand the troubling times prior to the Civil War and could serve as a resource for an entire unit of study. Highly Recommended."

The American Revolution: Experience the Battle for Independence
Publishers Weekly 
Readers can take a hands-on approach to learning about the American Revolution in this addition to the Build It Yourself series. Each chapter begins with an “essential question” that serves as an entry point (“What factors caused American colonists to begin to resent British rule in the 1760s?”). At the end of each chapter, readers are invited to compose a thesis statement in response to the opening question. Sidebars supplement the material with vocabulary definitions, trivia, and additional information about such figures as Thomas Paine, Benedict Arnold, and Phillis Wheatley. Cartoon illustrations and 25 activities (such as preparing “firecake,” the simple bread that soldiers ate on the battlefield) create a lively learning experience, though the instructional tone makes the book an unlikely candidate for casual reading.

Detailed Book Description

How does a country rebuild the infrastructure, government, and economy of a huge region while taking steps to resolve the status of 4 million newly freed people?

In Reconstruction: The Rebuilding of the United States After the Civil War, middle schoolers examine the era from 1865 to 1877, a time when the United States wrestled with questions that still plague the country today. Who should get access to citizenship and voting rights? How should the power of the federal government be balanced against the rights of the states? What is the proper government response to white supremacy?

Essential questions guide readers’ investigations while hands-on activities promote critical and creative problem solving and text-to-world connections highlight the way the past provides context for the present-day world.

Try these critical-thinking activities!

  • Renegotiate a sharecropping contract
  • Dismantle the single-story stereotype
  • Design a monument to memorialize Reconstruction
  • Map 40 acres and a mule
Available In:
Hardcover, $22.95
Paperback, $17.95
Includes: Table of Contents | Timeline | Maps | Glossary | Resources | Index
Specs: 8 x 10 size | 4-color interior | 128 pages
Subject: Social Studies
Content Focus: U.S. History




The Past Informs the Present

Chapter 1
Rehearsals for Reconstruction

Chapter 2
Presidential Reconstruction

Chapter 3
Congress Takes a Stand

Chapter 4
Radical Reconstruction

Chapter 5
High Crimes and Misdemeanors

Chapter 6
A Moment in the Sun

Chapter 7
The Wheel of Progress Rolls Backward

Chapter 8
The Legacies of Reconstruction

Selected Bibliography