Skip to Content

People Who Said No (book)

Found in: langaage arts & literature, social studies, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12

People Who Said No: Courage Against Oppression (2012) by Laura Scandiffio.

In People Who Said No, Laura Scandiffio profiles individuals and groups who defied injustice for grade 5-8 social studies students. Seven chapters cover The White Rose, Rosa Parks, Andrei Sakharov, Helen Suzman, Oscar Romero, Aung San Suu Kyi, and the Uprising in Egypt. Some names are familiar. Others, like The White Rose, may not be. You may find People Who Said No: Courage Against Oppression FREE at your local library or for sale at

The White Rose was a non-violent group of students and a philosophy professor at the University of Munich who wrote, printed, and distributed leaflets that called for active resistance to Hitler and the Nazi Party from June 1942 until February 1943. Hans and Sophie Scholl are probably the two best-known members. Both were executed for treason, as were others in the group.

Two other books about The White Rose that are suited for high school history or German language students are The White Rose: Munich, 1942-1943 (1983) by Inge Scholl, a sister of Hans and Sophie, and A Noble Treason: The Story of Sophie Scholl and the White Rose Revolt Against Hitler (2012) by Richard Hanser. Inge Scholl’s book includes the text of all the White Rose leaflets and related documents.

High school history teachers may choose to use all or part of Sophie Scholl - The Final Days (2005) (1:55:50), a DVD that covers the last five days of the principal members of The White Rose. The movie is in German with English subtitles.

A lesson to support study of the movement is The White Rose, for grades 6-12, combines social studies and art as students design a leaflet of protest using the Scholls' "Leaflets of the White Rose" as a model. On the lesson plan, he link to the White Rose images is broken, but Photos: The White Rose is active.

The White Rose and the others featured in People Who Said No: Courage Against Oppression practiced civil disobedience. Henry David Thoreau’s influential 1849 essay “Civil Disobedience” influenced Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr. The text of “Civil Disobedience” is available from the University of Virginia.

In Calculated Acts: Civil Disobedience and Social Change, students in grades 7-9 explore civil disobedience as a tool for social change. Support materials and standards are included.

Teaching Critical Thinking: The Believing Game & the Doubting Game asks high school students to make a systematic, disciplined effort to believe a point of view no matter how unfamiliar or ridiculous and then to doubt a point of view no matter how familiar and reasonable.


Average User Rating (0 users)

3 stars
of 5.

Your Rating