The rich and often tragic history of Black and Latino Americans has long been ignored.
In Black Chronicle and La Cronica historians and educators use a newspaper format to tell of their contributions and struggles.


Using Black Chronicle & La Crónica

In the Classroom


BLACK CHRONICLE and LA CRONICA are Black and Mexican American history in a newspaper format. Both publications have been created by educators and historians to deliver historical information from the Black and Mexican American perspective. The information in both is not fiction. Every incident has been drawn from historical source materials, including historical newspapers, diaries and letters.

The newspaper format provides a variety of reading levels and consequently will be of interest to the skilled as well as the slow reader. Material on a beginning reading level includes headlines, advertisements, items and picture captions. On an intermediate reading level, there are news stories and historical features. Stories on an advanced reading level include analytical features and editorials. Maps, diagrams, and pictures appear throughout the issues of BLACK CHRONICLE and LA CRONICA.


BLACK CHRONICLE and LA CRONICA are useful tools not only for social studies curricula, but also for teaching word study, vocabulary, comprehension, and work/study skills. LA CRONICA, in English and Spanish, is perfect for language study. The newspaper format includes a variety of reading levels. It offers writing styles which range from straight reportorial to highly figurative and idiomatic. Finally, the journalistic format as applied to black and Mexican American history provides an emotional impact which maintains high interest level. The newspaper format is particularly valuable for an introduction to reading because it is one of our most accessible forms of literature.

List, for your own reference, the dates and textbook pages to which BLACK CHRONICLE and LA CRONICA MATERIALS relate. These will help you to schedule the use of the newspapers

Be flexible in using these publications. They are adaptable to varying classroom situations.

Call attention to the tone and language in each issue of BLACK CHRONICLE and LA CRONICA. They may vary from issue to issue.

There are several ways in which this material can be made a cohesive unit for the students. This can be done through discussions and activities using charts, dramatizations, interviews and illustrations. There is a great deal of rich material in these issues which does not deal directly with the lead article, but used in conjunction with the textbook will help put the material in the context of the time.

Allot time for students to read the newspaper independently, perhaps as homework. However, the students should be familiar with the meanings of certain words before they read BLACK CHRONICLE or LA CRONICA. It is recommended that the teacher list and define unfamiliar words before assigning the issues.


BLACK CHRONICLE and LA CRONICA can be used as both core curriculum and as supplemental material. As core curriculum, they can be assigned as basic texts in ethnic studies courses, including Black history or Mexican American culture and history. As supplemental material, they can be used in conjunction with courses in U.S. History. LA CRONICA also will be a valuable addition to Southwest history and state histories. Teachers in these courses will want to coordinate use of the newspaper issues with basic texts, the Web, and audio-visual materials.


Teachers should be familiar with the variety of names used by Mexican Americans. Mexican American is only one of many titles used by people of Mexican descent to describe themselves. Appellations have varied from state to state: In Texas, the terms used have been Latino American, Latin, Tejano and Texas Mexican; in New Mexico, the terms have been Hispano and New Mexican; in California the historical term has been Californio. The term Spanish American has been used in a number of southwestern states by those who emphasize their Spanish ancestry while others have called themselves Hispano Americans and, since the 1900s Mexican American. In the 1920s and 1930s, Mexican and Mexican American were used interchangeably, probably because of the enormous immigrant population. Today, Latino is widely used as well. In the 1960s and 1970s, young people began to call themselves Chicanos. The derivation of Chicano is uncertain. Some claim the term is a shortening of the word mejicano. Once considered by many a derogatory term, Chicano is used by people today to emphasize pride in their Mexican and Indian heritage.


Establish a comfortable climate for use in class of the terms "Colored," "Negro," and "Black." They have been used with varying frequency since Colonial times and may be an interesting topic for discussion. (Other terms used have been "Aframericans," "Afro-Americans," "Oppressed Americans," "Afric-Americans," and, particularly in Colonial tines, "Africans.") Today's wide acceptance of the term "Black" is reflected by its use in the Black Chronicle.