ALA’s Sara Jaffarian Award Presents: Creating an Interactive Exhibit in Your School Library

1 hour

Find out how a school librarian and a history teacher created an interactive research project that engaged their entire school community in learning about the 1960 Greensboro (N.C.) lunch counter sit-ins, a seminal part of the Civil Rights Movement. In this webinar, Constance Vidor, director of library services at the Friends Seminary, a K-12 independent Quaker school in New York City, will share how a research project can become a community event that offers opportunities for discussion, reflection and discovery.

On Feb. 1, 1960, at 4:30 p.m., four college students sat down at the lunch counter inside the Woolworth store at 132 South Elm Street in Greensboro, N.C. At this time, restaurants, neighborhoods, parks and myriad other public facilities and services were segregated; the simple act of sitting down and ordering a cup of coffee was a dramatic act of civil disobedience. The young men continued to sit peacefully every day at this store for five months. Their protest inspired similar actions throughout the country.

This webinar will describe an innovative approach to a research project on the Greensboro protests. Students at the Friends Seminary created an interactive display of archival photographs and explanatory texts that drew people from all sectors of the school community to the library. Students in younger and older grades, parents, staff and casual visitors came to the library, viewed the display and discussed it.

Webinar attendees will learn not only how to develop a project focused on the Greensboro sit-ins, but also on how to structure a research experience that builds community and engages learners beyond the classroom. The webinar will also review how Friends Seminary intentionally incorporated elements of the school's mission into the learning experience. 

Created by Friends Seminary Director of Library Services Constance Vidor and history teacher Elizabeth Grossi, the Greensboro sit-in exhibit was awarded ALA's 2016 Sara Jaffarian School Library Program Award for Exemplary Humanities Programming.

constance vidor headshot

Constance Vidor is the director of library services at Friends Seminary, a K-12 independent Quaker school in New York City. Her career has encompassed public and independent school librarianship, college teaching and storytelling. She finds inspiration for library programs in museum visits, worldwide travels and conversations with students. In the summer, you can often find her reading on a bench in Central Park, the setting of her favorite book, "The Prince of Central Park" by Evan K. Rhodes.