Junior Research Paper -  Essential Questions

I.Compare and Contrast – The period from 1942-1965 was a time when various groups in the U.S. were discriminated against.  They struggled in different ways to obtain rights that other Americans already had.   These groups tried to get things to change using violence, non-violence, and politics (voting, political office, etc.)
a) Civil Rights Act and Equal Rights Amendment
b) Non-violent black movements such as the NAACP,  and SNCC and radical black movements such as:  Black Panthers, Black Muslims and CORE.
c) Native Americans and Japanese-Americans

Your task is to choose 1of these pairs (a, b, or c) and do the following:

  1. explain the issue – why were they in this situation
  2. compare and contrast how each group went about trying to secure their rights
  3. what were the results of their efforts

II.  Analyze and React –   In the course of history certain events have occurred that may not have seemed historic at the time, but  when looking back, it’s obvious how important they were. Martin Luther King’s  “I Have a Dream” speech and the Brown v. the Board of Education decision are two of those events.  What impact have MLK’s speech OR the Brown v. Board of Education decisions had on society?
Your task is to look at ONE OR THE OTHER event and do the following:

  1. Explain the racial discrimination that African-Americans were experiencing prior to 1960.  (Use examples).
  2. Identify the most important parts of the speech/decision
  3. Include the date the event took place, the location, and the target audience
  4. Explain what the lasting effects of this event were:  In other words, are schools integrated today?  Explain.  Have MLK’s “dreams” been realized?

III.  Impact on Society – How have each of the following individuals or events made an impression on society that is still felt today?

  1. Freedom Riders
  2. Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier in major league sports (Limited to three reports per class).
  3. Larry Doby
  4. Betty Friedan
  5. Alice Walker
  6. Lucille Ball
  7. United Farm Workers - Cesar Chavez
  8. Little Rock Nine

Your task is to choose one of the above events/issues and do the following:

  1. Identify the individual or event
  2. What was going on in the U.S. during the 1950’s and 60’s that led to the change?
  3. How did this individual or event affect society then and now?

Websites for Junior Research
April 2008

Question 1:
African Americans
Info on Little Rock 9, Rosa Parks, MLK’s speech, also great photos



  Non-violent v Radical




Question 2:

I Have A Dream…”

“Brown v Board of Ed

        Question 3:

Freedom rides

Jackie Robinson

United Farm Workers

Lucille Ball





Alice Walker



Larry Doby






May 2009