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The Highest Tribute: Thurgood Marshall’s Life, Leadership and Legacy

There are so many things about this book that makes it essential in today’s classroom. First of all, the story and legacy of Thurgood Marshall is a story every child should know. He is the first Black justice of the U.S Supreme Court. This fact in itself should hold space in a classroom for conversations, inquiries and discussions. But I’m getting ahead of myself (that’s how much I love this book!) because first we have to honor the path that took Thurgood Marshall there, starting with his childhood observations of what is right and what is wrong. His observations always led to questions such as, “but one little Black boy couldn’t change it. Could he?” Thurgood Marshall was very observant, he was full of questions, and he also like using words and ideas to persuade people to think of complicated issues through new lenses.

The more you read this book, the more one realizes that this book is full of possibilities and that every child should have access to inspiring stories like this because it’s hard to become something you don’t see. Our Black children deserve to know that their Black excellence has potential to reach new heights and chart new paths for people. Thurgood Marshall’s life is such a beautiful example of a life well-lived and this book captured his dedication to justice. Author Kekla Magoon wrote this book in a way that makes readers more curious with every turning page. Laura Freeman’s gorgeous and huge illustrations in this book captures the magnificent presence that Thurgood Marshall carried. This book invites questions, wonders, observations and noticing. It’s the kind of book that elevates any classroom where an inquiry-based approach to learning is honored!

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