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Stitching together the social fabric for young mothers in Appalachia

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Carrol Layfield manages a quilting group of older women from Ritchie County, West Virginia, who used to work in the area’s garment industry. Using techniques handed down over generations, the women piece together quilts from remnants of fabric from shuttered factories. Kayla Turk is a young mother of two children who returned home to Ritchie County to live with her parents when her husband was laid off. At a communal baby shower, Kayla receives a quilt from the older women, and discovers a network of support.
Grade Level
3-5
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Topic
Subject
History
Economics
Social Justice Domain
TEXT
Multimedia

Every little girl should be able to wear a tutu

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“Ava is an ambitious teenager who owes much of her inner strength to a dance studio in South L.A. Founder Lula Washington and her daughter Tamica are professional dancers — and they are role models as well as teachers. At their dance school, African American children learn to respect themselves, their bodies, and their cultural traditions. The young dancers also defy stereotypes by mastering ballet. The dance program cultivates self-discipline and mutual support that enables girls like Ava to flourish even when their families are facing hard times.”
Grade Level
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Subject
History
Social Justice Domain
TEXT
Multimedia

Fun and Fitness in a Library Parking Lot

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Line dance leader Kit Cheung teaches her class of Chinese-American women in an unlikely place: the parking lot of a local library. No other public location offers both the outdoor space and sun cover the group requires for their twist on the traditional Chinese exercise of tai chi. The relationship that forms between the initially reluctant library and Kit’s dance group has created some unexpected opportunities.
Grade Level
3-5
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Subject
Social Studies
Social Justice Domain
TEXT
Multimedia

Veterans discover solace in service

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“Marine Corporal Jeremy Dobbins returned to Dayton, Ohio, from duty in Afghanistan with an 80% disability rating and issues with anger. Trained in service to others, veterans often resist the idea that they themselves need help and they have difficulty with sharing their war experiences with family and friends. An oral history project at Wright State University is giving Jeremy and other young veterans a chance to help older veterans recover their stories of war, and to come to terms with their own.”
Grade Level
3-5
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Topic
Subject
Social Studies
Social Justice Domain
TEXT
Informational

A Painter Named Kennedy

Meet Kennedy, of Mombasa, Kenya. His wheelchair doesn’t stop him from making the world a more beautiful place.
Grade Level
3-5
Jerry McGill & Jason Raish (illustrator)
Topic
Subject
Economics
Geography
Social Justice Domain
TEXT
Literature

Sometimes

Toby and Clemmie love each other very much. Sometimes Clemmie has to go to the hospital though, and it can be scary. Luckily, Toby and Clemmie know how to make the best out of every situation—even ones that involve a trip to the hospital.
Grade Level
K-2
Rebecca Elliott
Topic
Social Justice Domain
TEXT
Informational

1982: The AIDS Epidemic

In his article, physician and journalist Lawrence K. Altman describes the early cases of acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) and the uncertainty that surrounded the infectious disease at its naming.
Grade Level
Lawrence K. Altman
Subject
History
Social Justice Domain