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Black History and the Civil Rights Movement on Audiobooks

Categories: Audiobook Library

Read about America's rich and dynamic history from the perspective of Black Americans. The Civil Rights movement began a groundswell of change and gave voice to the cause of equal rights for all that continues in our country to the present day. Learn about our neighbors' struggles, challenges, and triumphs as diverse cultures have come together to define America's history. Here are a few audiobooks we recommend that students will enjoy reading as they learn about American leaders.

I have a Dream


MLK - I have a dream

by Martin Luther King Jr.,
Recommended Grade Levels: All
On August 28, 1963, on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial during the March on Washington, Martin Luther King gave one of the most powerful and memorable speeches in our nation's history. 


Autobiography of Malcolm X

by Malcolm X
Recommended for Grade Levels: 9 and up
The Autobiography of Malcolm X stands as the definitive statement of a movement and a man whose work was never completed but whose message is timeless. It is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand America.


Letter from Birmingham Jail

by Martin Luther King Jr.
Recommended for Grade Levels: 7 and up
"The Letter from Birmingham Jail" is an open letter written on April 16, 1963, by Martin Luther King, Jr. The letter defends the strategy of nonviolent resistance to racism, arguing that people have a moral responsibility to break unjust laws.


The Port Chicago 50

by Steve Sheinkin
Recommended for Grade Levels: 6 and up
Newbery Honor winner and National Book Award finalist Steve Sheinkin shares a fascinating story of the prejudice that faced black men and women in America's armed forces during World War II.


Freedom on the Menu

by Carole Boston Weatherford; Jerome Lagarrigue (Illustrator)
recommended for Grade Levels: 4 - 8
Eight-year-old Connie is too young to march or give a speech, she helps her brother and sister make signs for the cause. Changes are coming to Connie’s town, but Connie just wants to sit at the lunch counter and eat a banana split like everyone else.


Who Was Rosa Parks?

by Yona Zeldis McDonough
Recommended for Grade Levels: 3 - 7
In 1955, Rosa Parks refused to give her bus seat to a white passenger in Montgomery, Alabama. This seemingly small act triggered civil rights protests across America and earned Rosa Parks the title Mother of the Civil Rights Movement.


Gone Crazy in Alabama

by Rita Williams-Garcia, Recommended for Grade Levels: 3 - 7
Newbery Honor winner and New York Times bestselling author Rita Williams-Garcia tells the story of the Gaither sisters, who are about to learn what it's like to be fish out of water as they travel from the streets of Brooklyn to the rural South for the summer of a lifetime. 


Freedom Songs

by Trina Robbins
Recommended for Grade Levels: 2 - 3
Fourteen-year-old Sarah is a slave in Maryland during the 1850s. She knows her only chance at freedom is to head North, where slavery is illegal. To get there, though, Sarah needs help from members of the Underground Railroad. But who can she trust?

Aunt Clara Brown

by Linda Lowery
Grade Level: 2 - 3
In 1859 Clara bought her own freedom and headed west to Colorado to find her daughter, who was sold when she was just a little girl. Clara didn't find her daughter there, but she did get rich, and she became known as Aunt Clara Brown.

Frederick Douglas

William Miller
Recommended for Grade Level: 1 - 4
Born into slavery young Frederick dreams of the day he and his people will be free. Yet until that day comes, his only escape is through the books he reads, which take him to worlds far from his own. 

Got a book list suggestion? Send your ideas to: allkidscanread@learningally.org and help us get you the books you want and need to read.

About Learning Ally

Learning Ally is a leading nonprofit ed-tech organization delivering a comprehensive learning solution for struggling readers in elementary, middle and high schools. Our proven solution includes the most extensive library of human-read audiobooks that students want and need to read both at home and at school. This reading experience helps accelerate learning, enables a new level of access to knowledge and powerfully increases confidence and self-belief.

Learning Ally empowers over 240,000 students with improved comprehension, vocabulary, fluency and critical thinking skills. For over 70 years, we have helped transform the lives of struggling readers by bridging the gap between their reading capability and their academic potential as they confidently become lifelong learners who thrive in school and beyond.

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