going some place special by patricia c mckissack n.
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Going Some Place Special By: Patricia C. McKissack

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Going Some Place Special By: Patricia C. McKissack. Lannie Bass’Author’s Chair . Overview. In segregated 1950s Nashville, a young African American girl, named Tricia Ann, endures a series of indignities and obstacles to get to one of the few integrated places in town:  the public library. .

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  • In segregated 1950s Nashville, a young African American girl, named Tricia Ann, endures a series of indignities and obstacles to get to one of the few integrated places in town:  the public library. 
does the book tell a good story
Does the Book Tell a Good Story?
  • Yes.
  • Tricia Ann’s Grandmother teaches her that she is "somebody" no matter how unfairly other people treat her. Another older woman helps her in the garden when she is feeling overwhelmed by discrimination. When she reads signs that tell her to sit in back, or not to sit at all, older people tell her that those signs can tell her where to sit but not what to think.
is the story accurate and authentic in its historical detail
Is the Story Accurate and Authentic in its Historical Detail?
  • Yes.
  • The book refers to Jim Crow laws. Jim Crow laws were state and local laws enacted in the Southern and border states of the United States and enforced between 1876 and 1965. They mandated "separate but equal" status for African Americans. In reality, this led to treatment and accommodations that were inferior to those provided to white Americans. The most important laws required that public schools, public places and public transportation, like trains and buses, have separate facilities for whites and blacks.


"No colored people allowed!".

is the language authentic to the times
Is the Language Authentic to the Times?
  • Yes.
  • They spoke English in the book. Some words may be described as “Broken English.”
  • “I don’t know if I’m ready to turn you loose in the world,” Mama Frances answered, tying the sash of ‘Tricia Ann’s dress. “Goin’ off alone is a mighty big step.”
is the historical interpretation sound
Is the Historical Interpretation Sound?
  • Yes.
  • Tricia Ann went through scrutiny while trying to make her way to the public library, which she calls “someplace special”.
  • She saw restrictive signs that were constant and humiliating reminders with a common message—“stay in your place.”
  • When she caught the bus to go to the library, she had to sit in the “colored section” in the back of the bus.
whose voices are missing
Whose Voices are Missing?
  • I thought that the book captured the voices of several perspectives, so nothing was necessarily “missing” in my opinion.
  • It showed Tricia Ann’s side with her personally struggling with being persecuted.
    • “It’s not fair.”
  • It showed Tricia Grandmothers (her caregiver) and a few others who knows what she is going through, to not let these unfortunate situation get the best of her.
    • "Hold yo' head up and act like you b'long to somebody."
  • It also showed the side of the white (racist) that victimized Tricia Ann while she was on her way to the library.
    • As Tricia passes a theater, a young white boy casually asks her if she's going to the show. Before she can reply, the boy's older sister angrily says, "Colored people can't come in the front door. They got to go 'round back and sit up in the Buzzard's Roost."
does the book provide insight and understanding into current issues as well as those in the past
Does the Book Provide Insight and Understanding into Current Issues as Well as those in the Past?
  • Definitely.
  • The book shows an unpleasant point in time where African Americans were treated horribly simply because of the color of their skin.
  • Human rights have changed dramatically from back then, however, racism still rears its ugly head even today.
instructional strategies
Instructional Strategies
  • In Her Place
  • After reading the book, ask children to explain how they think the main character, 'Tricia Ann, felt about the examples of segregation she faced in the story. Have children share in writing or a class discussion examples of events that occurred in the story, the feeling they think 'Tricia Ann had about the event and what in the story leads them to believe that is the feeling that she experienced. Further the activity by asking children to write or discuss how they would feel in the main character's place.
instructional strategies1
Instructional Strategies
  • Segregation History
  • After reading the story, introduce the term "segregation" so they understand why the main character faces the situations that she does. Explain some of the Jim Crow laws that affected children. One of the laws in Alabama prohibited blacks and whites from playing games together such as checkers or cards. After discussing the laws, write a letter together as a class to lawmakers requesting changes to laws that segregate.
instructional strategies2
Instructional Strategies
  • Someplace Special
  • In the story, 'Tricia Ann makes a trip to her special place, the public library. The library welcomes everyone, regardless of skin color. Ask children to think of a special place they like to go to and reflect on why it is special to them. They can also draw a picture of their special place, then dictate a sentence explaining why they chose the place they did.