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Classroom Resources for Nelson Mandela, Apartheid, and South Africa

Found In: language arts, social studies, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12

These lessons and resources will provide biographical information and historical context for a study on Nelson Mandela and his contributions to the end of apartheid in South Africa.


Death of Nelson Mandela: Complete Coverage - Interactive Feature is a New York Times resource that features a slide show, posters, memories, speeches, and reactions to Mandela’s death from notable figures. An additional multimedia section includes recorded memories of photographers who photographed him; video of music he inspired by musicians like Carlos Santana, Wayne Shorter, Hugh Masekela, Simple Minds, and others; a biographical timeline, and more.

6 Q’s About the News | Farewell, Nelson Mandela provides questions for using with the NY Times coverage of Mandela’s death.

Students in grades 9-12 compare two speeches or writings from Mandela and King in Freedom Fighters.

The Nelson Mandela Foundation is a source of biographical information and multimedia resources, including Len Sak’s political cartoons dealing with apartheid from 1990-1994.

The Long Walk of Nelson Mandela (1:50:30) is a biographical film originally broadcast in 1999 when Mandela was about to step down as president. The website includes a Viewers’ & Teachers’ Guide.

Nelson Mandela is a biographical website designed for students in grades 4-8. It includes text, photos, video, and a brief quiz.

In Nelson Mandela’s First-Ever TV Interview (1961) (3:48), he discusses the goals of Africans and his thoughts on nonviolence and violence in political struggle.


Living Under Apartheid are two short clips (2:48) (1:28) from POV’s Twelve Disciples of Nelson Mandela that provide first-hand accounts of life under apartheid.

In Nelson Mandela & the Fight Against Apartheid, students in grades 9-12 learn about apartheid, the struggle against it, and Nelson Mandela’s legacy as a leader in the struggle. A printer-friendly version is provided.

South Africa

South African History Online is the largest, independent, history education and research institute in South Africa. Its goal is to promote history and the arts and to address bias in the presentation of history is written and represented in South Africa.


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