Elijah of Buxton Themes
Updated: 1/26/2021
Elijah of Buxton Themes
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Elijah of Buxton

Elijah of Buxton by Christopher Paul Curtis

Teacher Guide by Liane Hicks

Elijah of Buxton by Christopher Paul Curtis is an award winning historical fiction novel told from the perspective of 11-year-old Elijah Freeman, the first child to be born free in the settlement of Buxton in Canada. Buxton is a real place settled by African Americans who had escaped the horrors of enslavement in America. Elijah is seen by his family and friends as "fra-gile", however, when he embarks on a dangerous mission to help a friend, Elijah displays courage and fortitude beyond his years.


Elijah of Buxton

Storyboard Description

Identify different themes present in the book: Elijah of Buxton. Illustrate and describe the themes using evidence from the text.

Storyboard Text

  • THE IMPORTANCE OF EDUCATION
  • September 1, 1860Teacher: Mr. TraversToday's Assignments:
  • English: Arithmetic: Greek: Latin: Geography:
  • THE VALUE OF COMMUNITY
  • "One helping one, to uplift all."
  • HOPE AND DETERMINATION
  • Buxton children are taught all subjects, which is in stark contrast to their parents' childhoods in slavery. Adults take reading classes at night. As Nelson Mandela said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
  • The community supports each other emotionally and the town thrives because everyone pitches in to help. If Elijah goes fishing, he always brings extra for his neighbors. Every visit ends with “tell your Ma I asked about her!" The care and support of one another is the backbone of the town.
  • Buxton residents have escaped unspeakable horrors and are determined to persevere through hard work and commitment to the community. Mr. Leroy is an example of Buxton's remarkable capacity for hope and determination. He works tirelessly to be able to one day rescue his family from slavery.
  • THEMES in ELIJAH OF BUXTON