This is one of the most powerful books I have read about slavery. Through
eleven “voices” of African slaves, living on the Fairchild estate, the reader
begins to understand the inner voice of each slave, his/her history, their
reactions to slavery, hopes and dreams. Each story, (written in prose), is
compelling and historical.
The guided reading packet I prepared for students helps them learn some
important vocabulary, historical information, and comprehension reading
strategies. Every time a student reads about one of the slaves on the estate,
they have to compose what they would say to that man or woman if they had
the chance. As a post-reading activity, students will take on the role of one
of the men or women depicted in the book, and write a script about
themselves, portraying their childhood, their roles as slaves, their inner
voices, and their dreams. Students can memorize and present their
characters on stage. These “presentations” can be one or two very powerful
presentations that can be performed for other students and parents.