Social Justice Lesson

Hey ya’ll, Miss Highfill (soon to not be Miss) requested the poem I read and the one I created for the Social Justice Lesson that Reba and I taught. I figured I would save myself some time and effort (because I’m slowly becoming incredibly unmotivated) and post it to my blog for you all to use.

Social Justice and Writing Workshop

Have students take out Writer’s Notebook or black sheet of paper.
Ask them write down anything they like, want to mention, or find similar in their life.

Raised by Women
Kelly Norman Ellis

I was raised by
Chitterling eating
Vegetarian cooking
Cornbread so good you want to lay
down and die baking
“Go on baby, get yo’self a plate”
Kind of Women.

Some thick haired
Angela Davis afro styling
“Girl, lay back
and let me scratch yo head”
Sorta Women.

Some big legged
High yellow, mocha brown
Hip shaking
Miniskirt wearing
Hip huggers hugging
Daring debutantes
“I know I look good”
Type of Women.

Some tea sipping
White glove wearing
Got married too soon
in just the nick of time
“Better say yes ma’am to me”
Type of sisters.

Some fingerpopping
Boogaloo dancing
Say it loud
I’m black and I’m proud
James Brown listening
“Go on girl shake that thing”
Kind of Sisters.

Some face slapping
Hands on hips
“Don’t mess with me,
Pack your bags and
get the hell out of my house”
Sorta women

Some PhD toten
Poetry writing
Portrait painting
“I’ll see you in court”
World traveling
Stand back, I’m creating
Type of queens
I was raised by women

Share what they wrote.
Do the same with my piece.

Home Grown (Mariah Busch)

I was raised by honkey tonk
get your boots on
the sun comes up
and we work ’til dawn
kind of livin’

I was raised by prayers comes first
covered in dirt
you can’t leave the table ’til the plates clean
kind of livin’

The eggs come brown
the fields grow yellow
the tractors painted green
kind of livin’

Do your best
work for the rest
don’t settle for less
work through a mess
kind of livin’

I was raised by best friends
don’t chase the hens
be nice to your brother
you’ll grow up to be your mother
kind of livin’

Times heals all
Patience is a virtue
Life is a privilege
Kind of livin’


Ask students to share their opinions, praises, or similarities
Give students a chance to write their own draft.
Have students gather and sit in a circle.
Share their own drafts one by one-while they share have them listen and write down any praises, similarities, experiences that triggered their own personal memory.
Share what they wrote with each other.

1) create a classroom community of different lifestyles
2)recognize how differences also have similarities
3)create a comfortable environment which students can share


2 thoughts on “Social Justice Lesson

  1. This was a fun activity and a much better “ice breaker” than some others I’ve been forced to participate in. I want my students to feel comfortable sharing their work and writing about themselves. Great activity, Mariah!

  2. Pingback: It’s an Exciting Wednesday! | kelseyempfield

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