Harlem Renaissance Lesson

The Harlem Renaissance
Bartlett Middle School
The Harlem Renaissance
• The Harlem Renaissance (HR) is the
name given to the period from the end of
World War I and through the middle of the
1930s Depression.
• A group of African-American writers
produced poetry, fiction, drama, and
The Great Migration
• Between 1920 and 1925 more than 2
million African Americans moved from
the South to northern cites (such as New
York City, Chicago, and Washington,
D.C.) , and where more jobs were
available and they felt life would be
• This was called “The Great Migration”.
Harlem: A Poem
Walter Dean Myers
illustrated by Christopher Myers
Places leading to Harlem
Waycross, Georgia
East St. Louis, Missouri
Holly Springs, Mississippi
Gee’s Bend, Alabama
Memphis, Tennessee
Trinidad, West Indies
Goree Island, Senegal, Africa
Harlem Renaissance
Centered in Harlem in the 1920s-1930s,
the Harlem Renaissance was a period in
which African Americans created great
literature, music and art. They wrote
poetry, prose, plays, and novels. The
literature ranged in subject, but race and
racial identity was a common theme.
Places in Harlem mentioned
in the poem.
1-2-5 Street
Lenox Avenue
The Cotton Club
Abyssinian Baptist Church
Apollo Theatre
Striver’s Row
Take the “A” Train to Harlem
• Listen to the music
• Duke Ellington’s
theme song was
“Take the A Train”
Duke Ellington
• The Caldecott Honor book by Andrea Davis
Pinkney, with illustrations by Brian Pinkney and
narration by Forrest Whitaker
• Duke Ellington was hailed as the "King of the
Keys". This is a most fitting tribute to a great
man who proudly celebrated the history of
African-Americans, from slavery to civil rights
• Brian Pinkney's glorious artwork swings and
sways to Duke Ellington's spellbinding music.
• Narrated with flair by Forest Whitaker.
Manhattan Island, New York City
Famous Black People
Mentioned in Harlem: A Poem
• Boxers- Jack Johnson, Joe Louis, Sugar Ray
• Writers- Langston Hughes, Countee Cullen,
James Baldwin
• Blues Singer – “Lady Day” Billie Holiday
• Civil Rights Activists – Marcus Garvey,
Malcolm X, W.E.B. DuBois
Christopher Myers
Illustrator of Harlem: A Poem,
a Caldecott Honor Book in 1998
Walter Dean Myers
Harlem: A Poem
• Screenplay by Maxine Fisher.
• Set in Harlem in 1919, two girls - one white,
one black - form a lifelong friendship through a
chance encounter and the jazztime music of
young "Fats" Waller.
• Narrated by Ruby Dee.
• Harlem: A Poem by Walter Dean Myers, illustrated
by Christopher Myers, is a 1997 Caldecott Honor
book. It is published by Scholastic Books and is
available at your local bookstore.
• For more information on author Walter Dean Myers,
illustrator Christopher Myers, and Harlem: A Poem,
visit the Scholastic Books Web Site.
• The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
• Georgia Public Television