Listen&Learn: Harriet Tubman

Jaksyn Peacock
A woman who led hundreds of people to freedom.

Pre-listening vocabulary

  • activist: a person who stands up for a certain cause
  • slavery: a situation where a person owns another person
  • network: an organized group or system
  • illegal: not allowed by law
  • mission: a journey to complete a task
  • abolish: to end something

Listening activity

Gapfill exercise

Harriet Tubman was an American activist who helped to free hundreds of people from slavery. She was born into slavery herself around 1820, and she in 1849. A network of people called the Underground Railroad helped Tubman make the journey to the North, where slavery was illegal. However, once Tubman gained her , she decided that she wanted to help other people gain theirs. She began to work with the Underground Railroad. Her job was to rescue enslaved people and bring them to the North, where they could freely. She went on many missions over eight years. When the American Civil War began in 1861, Tubman joined the army to work as a . She eventually got to lead a raid in South Carolina that freed hundreds of enslaved people. Even after slavery was abolished in the United States, Tubman continued to fight for the rights of Black Americans and women. She died in 1913, at about 90 years old.

Comprehension questions

1. Tubman escaped slavery in

Correct! Wrong!

Tubman escaped slavery in 1849.

2. At that time in the United States, slavery was legal

Correct! Wrong!

At that time in the United States, slavery was legal in the South.

3. Tubman originally joined the army to work as

Correct! Wrong!

Tubman originally joined the army to work as a nurse.

Discussion/essay questions

  1. In the United States and Canada, February is Black History Month. Tubman’s story is often taught in schools during this time. Why is it so important to learn stories like hers?
  2. Can you think of some other people in history who fought for human rights?

Transcript

Harriet Tubman was an American activist who helped to free hundreds of people from slavery. She was born into slavery herself around 1820, and she escaped in 1849. A network of people called the Underground Railroad helped Tubman make the journey to the North, where slavery was illegal. However, once Tubman gained her freedom, she decided that she wanted to help other people gain theirs. She began to work with the Underground Railroad. Her job was to rescue enslaved people and bring them to the North, where they could live freely. She went on many missions over eight years. When the American Civil War began in 1861, Tubman joined the army to work as a nurse. She eventually got to lead a raid in South Carolina that freed hundreds of enslaved people. Even after slavery was abolished in the United States, Tubman continued to fight for the rights of Black Americans and women. She died in 1913, at about 90 years old.

Written and recorded by Jaksyn Peacock for EnglishClub

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