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Academic Standards (1)

CCSS English Language Arts and Literacy in History/Social Studies

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.11-12.7 Integrate and evaluate multiple sources of information presented in diverse formats and media (e.g., visually, quantitatively, as well as in words) in order to address a question or solve a problem.
  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.11-12.9 Integrate information from diverse sources, both primary and secondary, into a coherent understanding of an idea or event, noting discrepancies among sources.

NCSS C3 Framework

  • D4.3.9-12. Present adaptations of arguments and explanations that feature evocative ideas and perspectives on issues and topics to reach a range of audiences and venues outside the classroom using print and oral technologies (e.g., posters, essays, letters, debates, speeches, reports, and maps) and digital technologies (e.g., Internet, social media, and digital documentary).
  • D4.6.9-12. Use disciplinary and interdisciplinary lenses to understand the characteristics and causes of local, regional, and global problems; instances of such problems in multiple contexts; and challenges and opportunities faced by those trying to address these problems over time and place.
Statue of Liberty carrying tomatoes
Immokalee Statue of Liberty, by Kat Rodriguez, 2000

Key Terms and Concepts

  • community organizing
  • fast
  • divest
  • wage
  • gendered violence
  • modern-day slavery

Essential Questions

What are the circumstances that lead to resistance?
What methods and strategies are used in resistance efforts and movements?
How are patterns of immigration and migration associated with resistance?
How has resistance impacted American history and contemporary society?


The Campaign for Fair Food in Immokalee

Students will explain and synthesize various primary and secondary sources using close reading and note taking to create an artistic expression of resistance in the United States.


Warm Up (1)

  • Introduce students to the Immokalee Statue of Liberty, by artist Kat Rodriguez (2000), either by printing or projecting the image. Include the brief explanation, “Marching with Liberty.”
  • Point out that, unlike the original Statue of Liberty, this rendition holds a basket of tomatoes to represent the work of agricultural laborers. Explain that the statue’s original pedestal (not shown) featured words borrowed from the Langston Hughes poem “I, Too.” Read the poem as a class.
  • Facilitate a discussion about how these two works of art—the statue and poem—express a theme of resistance. Probe students to be specific by citing lines from the poem or pointing to visual elements of Rodriguez’s statue. How do these works differ in terms of audience, message, medium, and effect? Solicit (and provide) other examples of art (music, fashion, graphic art) that can be associated with resistance.

Research (1)

  • Have students learn about the resistance movement symbolized by the Immokalee Statue of Liberty, that of the Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW) and the Campaign for Fair Food. Divide the class in half, and have one group read “You Need to Know: The Slavery Conditions on Tomato Farms” (Huffington Post) and the other group “In Florida Tomato Fields, a Penny Buys Progress” (New York Times). Assign students to complete the Researching Resistance Worksheet as they read and take notes.
  • After reading, go over the worksheet with students and identify sections they were unable to complete. What questions remain? What do they still need to learn in order to answer the “who, what, where, when, why, and how” of the Fair Food Campaign? As a class, listen to the WMNF News podcast about the Coalition of Immokalee Workers. Stop to discuss, take notes, and complete the Researching Resistance Worksheet.

Debrief (1)

Revisit the Langston Hughes poem “I, Too” and Kat Rodriguez’s Immokalee Statue of Liberty. Now that they have more knowledge about the plight of migrant farm workers in the United States, what new thoughts do students have about what the poem and statue symbolize? Connect the discussion back to the theme of resistance.

Creative Writing (1)

  • Have a discussion with students about social problems they feel strongly about or that affect them personally—globally, nationally, or in their community. Generate a list of topics on the board. Then, ask if resistance is related to any of these issues. Are there groups organizing to fight for solutions? Are individuals working to overcome the problem? It may be helpful to refer back to the notes they took on the Researching Resistance Worksheet and to the lesson’s essential questions.
  • After honing in on a list of topics, assign students to choose one and design a work of art that symbolizes how they see the role of resistance in overcoming or confronting that problem. Depending on your time and resources, provide options for students such as poetry, photography, poster art, music, etc.

Presentations (1)

Allow time for students to present and showcase their work.