The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963 by Christopher Paul Curtis

The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963 book cover
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Ideas for Reports and Papers

(Beacham's Guide to Literature for Young Adults)

1. Momma did not really know anything about the cold. After fifteen years in Flint, she still believed cold weather could kill you in a flash. Find out about truly cold weather. Is there a place on earth where the cold could kill you in a matter of seconds or minutes? Create a chart or a method of your choice to record your findings so you can share them with your classmates.

2. The Watsons call their car the "Brown Bomber." Using some descriptive information given early in the novel and in chapter eight, find pictures of a car like it. From the descriptions, try to determine the year it was made. Research into how much the car cost when it was new.

3. Momma has planned their trip down to the last detail. Use a road map of the United States and chart their trip. Use map pins to mark the stopping places Momma had planned. Display the map on a bulletin board featuring The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963.

4. Momma even has the food and snacks planned for the entire trip. Using Momma's choices of foods, plan a picnic to enjoy during the reading and discussion of the trip portion of the book.

5. By frightens Joey and ultimately Kenny with his fabrication of the "Wool Pooh", Pooh Bear's evil twin. Chapter thirteen gives a good description of what Kenny thinks he sees when he is caught in the whirlpool. Create a picture of it. Think about how different art mediums work and choose one that best fits the situation: watercolors, colored pencil, collage, charcoal, or something of your choosing.

6. Research the Civil Rights Movement then work with a partner and plan a role play for sharing the information you find. One of you is involved in the Civil Rights Movement planning a march. The other is a news reporter for TV, radio, newspaper, or magazine. Your format for reporting to the class will depend your choice of media. Work together...

(The entire section is 488 words.)