This poetic book is a resounding tribute to Tubman’s strength, humility, and devotion. With proper reverence, Weatherford and Nelson honor the woman who, long ago, earned the name Moses.
Discuss the book and the main character Harriet Tubman. What do we know about her? What do we know about slavery in the United States? Talk about the Underground Railroad and railroad terminology.
While reading the book, think about the experiences of the story’s main character, Harriet. What does bravery mean? Do you think Harriet was brave? Can you think of anyone in your life that is brave?
Describe the story in your own words. What is the sequence of events? How did Harriet escape? What do you think would have happened if she was caught escaping? Harriet Tubman kept her escape a secret, would you have done that? What are some of the dangers she faces?
While reading this story and engaging in a fun learning activity, young readers will build reading skills, develop critical thinking skills, and make connections between characters in stories and real people.
■ Slavery: the practice of owning people as property.
■ Underground Railroad: secret routes and methods that slaves took to escape to freedom.
This book had lyrical and poetic text with beautiful illustrations. Have students’ construct their own poems with an illustration to go with it. The students could pick one scene in the story and write a poem in their own words using the book for inspiration. Compile the poems together to make a book published by the class.
Illustration: Khadir Nelson