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Talking to our children about Racism and the Civil Rights movement can be a daunting task. Â It’s an uncomfortable topic, but an important one. Â Regardless of the way your family “looks”, all of us need to know the history of our country, the good, the bad, and the ugly.
I always think that a great way to introduce a difficult topic is through a picture book. Â Even if your children are older, a picture book can be a gentle way to start a discussion.
One of our favorite picture books is called Sister Anne’s Hands. Â Sister Anne’s Hands tells the story of a young, black Catholic nun and her impact on a classroom in a Catholic school in the 60’s. Â It’s a beautiful, touching story.
A wonderful introduction to a big topic.
Sister Anne’s Hands Craft Ideas
An easy craft idea to go along with Sister Anne’s Hands is to make a cross our of hand prints. Â I traced each of my children’s hands on different kinds of scrapbook paper, cut them out and arranged them into the shape of a cross.
Any kind of handprint craft would work, even just doing simple finger painting with younger children.
or this idea withÂ finger paintÂ and
Sister Anne’s Hands Activities
Another easy activity is to have both a white egg and a brown egg, crack them open to show that the inside is just the same – a yellow yolk. Â The outside doesn’t matter, it’s the inside that counts!
I like to incorporate a food item or dinner when we are studying a particular book. Â Plus, food was an important part of the civil rights movement, a catalyst for change. Â Â Even though no specific food was mentioned in the book, it would be easy to go with something like lunch counter food. Â A cheeseburger and fries in a basket, ice cream sundaes, root beer floats, serve a casserole ;). Â Don’t forget about fried chicken or macaroni and cheese and a piece of your favorite pie!
I would also highly recommend the movie 42: The Jackie Robinson Story. Â We watched this with our older children while we were house hunting in Florida. Â There are some uncomfortable scenes, so be prepared to have discussions following the movie.
Another interesting bit of information, Father Augustus Tolton is the first known black slave to become a Catholic priest and is now going through the cause ofÂ canonization.