Activity 1: Story, Ruby Bridges, Surrounded by Love
Activity time: 10 minutes
Materials for Activity
- A copy of the story "Ruby Bridges, Surrounded by Love"
Preparation for Activity
- Read the story and prepare to share it with the group.
Description of Activity
Gather the children. Ask them how they felt when they first went to a new school or a new place. Affirm that even when they are new, they can make a difference. Tell them you will share a true story about a little girl who went someplace new, even when she was not sure others wanted her there. She was brave and went to a new school to stand up for herself and for other people who needed to be heard.
Read or tell the story of Ruby Bridges.
When you are done, process the story with these questions:
- What do you think about Ruby Bridges? Was she brave?
- What about her teacher, Barbara? She was the only person willing to teach an African American child in the all-white school.
- What did you think about Ruby praying for the angry people who yelled at her and threatened her? Do you think that would be hard to do?
- The story is called "Ruby Bridges, Surrounded by Love." Why do you think it is called that? Do you think Ruby was surrounded by love? When was she and when was she not? She surrounded others with love when she prayed for them even though those people could not show her love.
- As a Unitarian Universalist, what would you do to this situation? If you were a white child in that school, would you have gone to class, even if others didn't? Would you have gone to support Ruby?
Affirm for the group that Unitarian Universalists work toward social justice and support people who are not treated fairly. Ruby acted to stand up for herself and to give others a voice and a choice about which schools they would attend. Ruby's action showed courage and bravery. Her teacher, Barbara, also showed courage in standing by Ruby.
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