We’ve Got a Job: The 1963 Birmingham Children’s March

by Cynthia Levinson


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  • Item #79V2 in Voices Voices
    • Grades: 4 - 7
    • Ages: 9 - 12
    YALSA Finalist for Excellence in Nonfiction
    • Format: Paperback Book
      Paperback Book
Short Summary
Engrossing personal accounts of ordinary students guide readers through a turning point in the civil rights movement and highlight the determination and courage of young people who changed the world.

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In 1963, Birmingham, Alabama, was a city divided. Local politicians fought to keep the city segregated, with laws that made it illegal for African American and white citizens to share the same schools and experiences. Police officers beat and sometimes even killed African Americans, becoming a source of fear rather than protection.

Just when things seemed at their worst, an unexpected group of peaceful soldiers came forward: the African American children and teens of Birmingham. While adults were finding it hard to take action because of fears that they would lose their jobs or put their families at risk, young people around the city signed pledges of nonviolence and got friends involved. In a series of marches at the beginning of May, thousands of young people were arrested.

Following four students through these empowering and dangerous days, readers discover harrowing details, such as the techniques that young protestors used to withstand the blasts of fire hoses. The students also share memories of triumphantly eating ice cream at lunch counters and attending movie theaters for the first time after desegregation. Historic photographs support the text and bring the time period to life.

This fascinating account of a little-known chapter of the civil rights movement was a finalist for the 2013 YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults!

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Product Details

    • Grades: 4 - 7
    • Ages: 9 - 12
  • Product Type: Book
  • Page Count: 184 pages
  • Dimensions: 8" x 8 1/2"
  • Language: English
  • ISBN 13: 978-0-545-56172-3