top of page

 Teaching The Memphis 13

The Memphis 13 Foundation is deeply committed to educating the public about the pivotal role of The Memphis 13 in school desegregation, as well as the broader history of the Civil Rights Movement. We believe that understanding our past is vital for building a better future. That's why we have developed and compiled an extensive array of educational resources designed for educators, students, and anyone interested in learning more about these important historical events and figures.  


Memphis 13 curriculum unit was co-developed in partnership with the members of The Memphis 13, University of Memphis faculty, Memphis-Shelby County School teachers and instructional coaches, and civil rights educators in our community. It comes with a variety of suggested classroom activities, thought-provoking readings, and critical discussion points, helping students delve deep into the themes of social justice, equity, inclusion and civil rights. Our lesson plans, tailored to accommodate various grade levels, offer structured, day-by-day guides for teaching the Memphis 13 story. These resources incorporate multimedia content, practical exercises, and engaging discussion prompts to encourage students' active participation and critical thinking. 

Our Drivers

  • Collectively developed for our community, by our community.

  • Centers children in our curriculum as advocates for social justice, equity, and inclusion.

  • Contextualizes the struggle for civil rights as socio-historically experienced by members of our community.

  • Challenges students to engage in critical historical thinking for a more meaningful engagement with history, humanities, civics, and social studies.

  • Critically interrogates lived and learned schooling experiences to take informed action.

Curriculum Units

2nd Grade Curriculum

The second-grade unit focuses on the inquiry question of how children can make a difference in their communities, with a disciplinary focus on civics and an exploration of children using their rights and responsibilities in the Civil Rights Movement.

5th Grade Curriculum

The fifth-grade unit delves into the role of children in the Civil Rights Movement, with a disciplinary focus on historical thinking with a summative project capturing the oral histories of elders in their community school desegregation involvement.

The Memphis 13 Documentary

The Memphis 13 documentary was created to not only share the stories of 13 incredibly brave young people, but also to provide a starting point for conversations about inclusion, tolerance, and social change. 

bottom of page