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					A Letter to Baltimore City Public Schools Families

January 7, 2009                        Throughout Baltimore City
                                    Public Schools (City Schools)
Dear City Schools Students
                                    teachers and students will mark
and Families,
                                    this time, the March to Inaugu-
We are in an extraordinary          ration, with a range of activi-
time.                               ties. Enclosed is an optional
  With the birthdays of President   curriculum that has been given
Abraham Lincoln and the Rev. Dr. to schools, so that parents can
Martin Luther King Jr. in the weeks get an idea of the kinds of
ahead, we mark the lives of two of things our children may be
our nation’s greatest leaders—both doing in the days ahead to com-
deep believers in justice for all.  memorate this great event. Also
And on Tuesday, January 20, we      enclosed are times and places
celebrate the inauguration of our   for viewing the inauguration on
nation’s first African-American     January 20 and some suggested
president, Barack Obama. This       Inauguration Day activities for
represents an enormous step to-     you and your families.
wards an America where all people      May this day, and the hope it
have equal access to freedom,       represents, be a great one for
justice and opportunity, regardless the entire City Schools family.
of the color of their skin.
   The significance of this for
our children, in particular, is
tremendous. For once they
aren’t learning about history in
                                                     Brian D. Morris
textbooks; they are watching it
unfold before them. The possi-       Chair, Baltimore City Board of
bilities Barack Obama’s presi-                School Commissioners
dency represents for our kids
and their futures are boundless.

                                          Andrés A. Alonso, Ed.D.
                                              CEO, Baltimore City
                                                   Public Schools
                          Page 2
                          Page 2                                        March to Inauguration 2009
                                                                        March to Inauguration 2009

Bring the Classroom Into Your Living Room
Parents and families: In the week leading up to Jan. 20 your children’s teachers will be covering the presidency and, especially, the inaugural process
in many different ways. Below you’ll find just a few examples of Topics being covered in classrooms, Suggested Activities they are undertaking,
and online Resources they are using. For more ways to teach our great kids about Inauguration 2009, ask them about what’s going on in their class-
rooms, and then use these Resources and others listed in this guide. And have fun!

       TOPIC                                  SUGGESTED ACTIVITIES                                                        RESOURCES

      Barack                            Discuss with your younger children the significance of Barack      
                                        Obama’s presidency and create cards welcoming his children                   ities/activity.jsp?ar=991
      Obama                             to the White House.

   Inaugural                            For students who are taking Language Arts and English, have
                                        them compare and contrast what poets such as Robert Frost
     Poetry                             and Maya Angelou have read at past inaugurations.

                                        Kids can imagine that they are the newly elected president and
   Inaugural                            write their own Inauguration Day speech. Take excerpts from        
                                        past inaugural speeches and perform them as a dramatic re-                   ation.htm
    Speeches                            enactment. This can also be done with inaugural poetry. Com-
                                        pare and contrast inaugural addresses of past U.S. presidents.     

                                        Students in the upper grades can explore the struggle of
                                        African-Americans to attain voting rights and develop a greater    
      Change                            appreciation for the significance of Barack Obama’s election.                ities/activity.jsp?ar=994
                                        They can do more research in the suggested resource.

   History of                           Math students can use online or library resources to find or
                                        calculate each president’s age at inauguration. They can then
      the                               graph the ages of the presidents and calculate the average age               son/00-2/lp2089.shtml
  Presidency                            at inauguration.

                                        In the classroom, English language learners may be asked to
                                        talk about elections and inaugurations in their home countries     
 International                          if they feel comfortable doing so. Compare and contrast the                  /languages/articles/8928.aspx
 Perspectives                           process in their home nation and the United States. Research
                                        how this election is viewed in the global community, and
                                        write a commentary from the perspective of another culture.

                                        President Obama said: “Let us be the generation that re-
                                        shapes our economy to compete in the digital age. … Let’s
   Presidential                         lay down broadband lines through the heart of inner cities         
     Policies                           and rural towns all across America.” Discuss with your sci-                  /technology
                                        ence students what Obama’s policies, if they are enacted,
                                        might mean for Baltimore.
                            March to Inauguration 2009                                               Page 3

Inauguration Activities
In Baltimore                                                     In Washington
Even if you can’t make it to Washington for Inauguration
Day, don’t worry: There are plenty of things you can do          Morning services: The Obama and Biden families will
right here at home.                                              attend a morning religious service.
     On Saturday, Jan. 17, the Obama-Biden train will stop in    Motorcade: Afterward, there will be a motorcade of cars
     Baltimore. Watch the local news for details.                from morning services to the U.S. Capitol.
     There will be a free citywide family event at Camden        Swearing-In Ceremony: A musical prelude starts around
     Yards on Inauguration Day, Jan. 20, from 11 a.m. to         10 a.m. The swearing-in ceremony, which takes place on the
     2 p.m. (gates open at 10 a.m.), sponsored by the Balti-     steps of the U.S. Capitol, begins at around noon with
     more City Department of Recreation and Parks. Cele-         welcoming remarks, an invocation and music.
     brate the inauguration with thousands of fellow stu-        Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens will administer the
     dents and Baltimoreans. Stay tuned to City Schools          oath of office to Vice President-Elect Joseph Biden. Chief
     and the local news for details.                             Justice John Roberts will then administer the oath of office
     If you can’t make it to Camden Yards, celebrate the         to President-Elect Barack Obama, who will then make his
     inauguration at home by watching the ceremonies on          Inaugural Address. The swearing-in ceremony will end with
     TV (it will be on all the major networks, PBS, CNN and      a poem, a benediction and the national anthem.
     other channels), listening to them on the radio (WYPR       Inaugural Parade: Starting at about 2:30 p.m., there will
     88.1 FM, WEAA 88.9 FM), or following along at your          be a parade along Pennsylvania Avenue from the U.S. Capi-
     favorite news web site.                                     tol to the White House, the new home of President Obama
     Be sure to take time out Jan. 20 to discuss the day’s       and his family.
     historic events with your family, the community and,        Inaugural Balls: In the evening, President Obama and his
     especially, our great kids. This a rare opportunity to      wife will attend a number of balls and galas around Wash-
     watch history unfold and talk about it.                     ington. In fact, this party is so big that balls are planned out
     Find ways to mark this day with family, neighbors and       through Jan. 24.
     friends. Gather together to watch the inauguration on
     TV. Make a special dinner for friends and family and talk
     about the day (see Barack Obama’s favorite chili recipe
     on the next page). Check with your place of worship,
     community center or school to see what’s planned.
     Encourage your children to participate in an active way.
     Draw a picture, write a poem or an essay; if you or
     they have a journal or diary, be sure to write an entry
     about the day’s events. To help you get started, we’ve
     included a number of activities—a word find for
     younger students, an Inaugural Address bingo card for
     kids in the middle grades, and a trivia quiz for older
     students—on the following page and at our web site
     Finally, here’s a list of online resources that you and
     your family can also use:,,,
                          Page 4                                      March to Inauguration 2009

Inauguration Day Fun Page
 Inauguration Word Search                                                    Obama Bingo
 As you look for the words listed below, remember they                       Listen to Barack Obama’s Inaugural Address. Cross out
 can be horizontal (across), vertical (up and down), or                      each word as you hear it. Cross out a row across, up
 diagonal— frontward or backward! As you find words,                         and down or diagonally, and you win!
 circle them. If you find them all, consider yourself a
 topnotch word sleuth!
                                                                               America       Seniors      Children       Energy     Commu-
      T   N   E   D   I   B   H    P   E   S   O   J   L   E   W
      N   U   X   F   N   Z   H    J   I   J   E   O   A   T   G
      E   G   T   V   A   O   L    T   G   P   T   N   N   H   B               Families      Service        Peace        Unity         Chal-
      D   T   J   K   U   N   T    N   Y   I   E   E   F   A   H                                                                      lenges
      I   D   I   P   G   V   S    G   P   H   W   V   R   P   F
      S   Q   F   Q   U   Y   I    A   N   N   P   A   H   S   I                 Infra-      Health                     Immigra-     Citizens
      E   Q   H   T   R   M   C    N   V   I   C   S   C   L   S               structure                                  tion
      R   J   P   Y   A   P   S    S   D   K   H   M   U   I   D
      P   L   Q   Z   T   S   G    U   O   C   J   S   V   Q   Z               Veterans      Nation        Housing      Environ-    Freedom
      L   L   N   R   I   R   I    B   P   K   R   T   A   G   W                                                         ment
      D   Z   S   G   O   Z   A    U   U   Y   P   Z   Y   W   E
                                                                               Technol-       Work         Schools        Jobs       Change
      X   L   U   C   N   M   P    A   R   A   D   E   Y   D   N
      A   J   N   Q   A   Y   S    G   J   J   F   B   P   D   Q
      T   T   Y   P   X   L   R    Z   D   S   G   Q   I   C   Q
      H   M   M   Z   U   J   V    K   Q   Y   D   M   M   K   Z

      BARACK OBAMA • CAPITOL •                                                Inauguration Trivia
      INAUGURATION • JOSEPH BIDEN •                                           For a trivia quiz about Barack Obama and the inauguration,
      PARADE • PRESIDENT •                                                    please visit

Barack Obama’s Favorite Chili Recipe
INGREDIENTS                                                DIRECTIONS
                                                           1. Sauté onions, green pepper and garlic
  1 large onion, chopped                                   in vegetable or olive oil until soft.
  1 green pepper, chopped                                  2. Add ground meat and brown.
  Several cloves of garlic, chopped                        3. Combine spices together.
  1 tablespoon olive oil                                   4. Add to ground meat.
                                                           5. Add red wine or apple
  1 pound ground turkey or beef
                                                           cider vinegar.
  1/4 teaspoon ground cumin                                6. Add tomatoes and
  1/4 teaspoon ground oregano                              let simmer, until to-
  1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric                             matoes cook down.
                                                           7. Add kidney beans
  1/4 teaspoon ground basil
                                                           and cook for a few more
  1 tablespoon chili powder                                minutes.
  3 tablespoons red wine vinegar                           8. Serve over white or brown rice.
  Several tomatoes, chopped
  1 can red kidney beans