Photographs of Mary McLeod Bethune and Her School

Lesson Plan

Overview

The photographs below document the earliest days of Mary McLeod Bethune's school. The images depict the Daytona Normal and Industrial School students in front of their school, at their barn, in sewing and needlework classes and washing laundry.

These photographs depict different aspects of the Daytona Normal and Industrial School. Teachers will prompt students to recall prior knowledge about Bethune. Students will use prior knowledge to describe what they believe a day at the Daytona Normal and Industrial School would look like. Students should then write about what they learn from analyzing the photographs.

Objectives

Students will:

  • Analyze primary source documents (photographs).
  • Describe Mary McLeod Bethune, her students, and the Daytona Normal and Industrial School ca. 1905 to ca. 1912.

Materials Needed

  1. Using Primary Sources Teacher’s Guides and Analysis Tool from the Library of Congress,
    OR
    Photo Analysis Worksheet
    from the National Archives and Records Administration.

  2. Photographs from the State Archives of Florida.

 

Florida Standards

  • SS.4.A.1.1: Analyze primary and secondary resources to identify significant individuals and events throughout Florida history.

  • SS.4.A.6.3: Describe the contributions of significant individuals to Florida.
    Examples may include, but are not limited to, John Gorrie, Henry Flagler, Henry Plant, Lue Gim Gong, Vincente Martinez Ybor, Julia Tuttle, Mary McLeod Bethune, Thomas Alva Edison, James Weldon Johnson, Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings.

  • LAFS.4.RI.1.1: Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.

Procedure

Part I: Activate Prior Knowledge

  1. Tell students that they are going to look at some photos of Mary McLeod Bethune, her school and students ca. 1905 to 1912.
  2. Ask students to imagine what they might see in the photos.
  3. Have students share their ideas with a neighbor.
  4. Write students' ideas in a visible location (e.g., flip chart or board).
  5. Allow time for discussion of conflicting expectations.

Part II: Photo Analysis

Students will analyze the images using the worksheet from with the National Archives or the Library of Congress.

Part III: Writing About Mary McLeod Bethune

Students will write about the photos, the differences between what they expected to see and what they found, and what they learned.

 

Extension Activities

Bethune was active in the fight against racism and served under several Presidents as a member of the unofficial African-American “brain trust.” In 1936 she was appointed by President Roosevelt as the director of the National Youth Administration’s Division of Negro Affairs. She also founded the National Council of Negro Women, and was an active member of the National Association of Colored Women.

Use the photo analysis worksheets to examine this photo of Eleanor Roosevelt with Mary McLeod Bethune.

Next Generation Sunshine State Standards

  • SS.4.A.1.1: Analyze primary and secondary resources to identify significant individuals and events throughout Florida history.

  • SS.4.A.6.3: Describe the contributions of significant individuals to Florida.
    Examples may include, but are not limited to, John Gorrie, Henry Flagler, Henry Plant, Lue Gim Gong, Vincente Martinez Ybor, Julia Tuttle, Mary McLeod Bethune, Thomas Alva Edison, James Weldon Johnson, Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings.

  • SS.4.A.8.1: Identify Florida’s role in the Civil Rights Movement.

Florida Standards:

  • LAFS.4.RI.1.1: Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.