The Life and Times of Percy Julian

For Teachers

Activity 1A (Reading)
The Segregated South: From Slavery to Jim Crow

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Lesson Overview The reading introduces students to the conditions that existed in the southeast United States (and indeed often in other parts of the nation as well) during the age of segregation, a period that lasted from the end of Reconstruction after the Civil War until the successes of the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 60s.
Learning Objectives The purpose is to familiarize students with the conditions of institutionalized and government-sanctioned racism into which Percy Julian was born and against which he struggled during much of his life, especially during his early years.
Lesson Concepts
  • discrimination
  • racism
  • Reconstruction
  • segregation
  • slavery
Materials Required No special materials are required.
Skills Required No special skills are required.
Time Required 10–15 minutes.
Student Ability Level and Grouping Individually or in small groups.

For additional background on Jim Crow Laws, see Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute.

For information on current (as of 2003) information about schools and segregation, see the report “Schools More Separate: Consequences of a Decade of Resegregation,” by Gary Orfield, from the Civil Rights Project, Harvard University.

Exectutive summary
Full report (PDF)

Assessment None.
Student Resources for Further Study

The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow from WNET/PBS

The History of Jim Crow


This activity meets the following National Science Education Standards (Grades 5-8) and Curriculum Standards for Social Studies.

National Science Education Standards (Grades 5-8)

  • None

Curriculum Standards for Social Studies

  • Culture
  • Time, Continuity, and Change
  • Individual Development and Identity
  • Individuals, Groups, and Institutions
  • Civic Ideals and Practices

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