8 Unique Things To Do for Black History Month
What is black history ????? Ummmmmm wellllllllllll ummmmmmmmm. Honestly, I’m a black woman and I’m still trying to find out. Most schools teach the average American about black history, in short, “Blacks came from Africa, they were brought on boats to America, and sold to people (particularly white people) as slaves for over 400 years. Until Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863 (right?).”
Wait? What? That’s it? What happened before? Who was my great great Grandmother? Why do some people hate blacks so much? African’s weren’t excited about coming to America, right? They wanted to stay in Africa (they were brought here by force). Was Columbus the first person to find/ discover America? Nope, Christopher Columbus said it himself in his own journal entry (“black-skinned people had come from the southeast in boats, trading in gold-tipped spears.”). I guess Indian scholar Rafique Jairazbhoy appears to have been right when he wrote .”The blacks began his career in America not as a slave but as a master.”
African American people have had it hard in this country since they stepped foot on American soil from the Mayflower (slave ship). Blacks have been fighting for human rights and equality for some time. Today in 2021 Blacks still seem to get the short end of the stick (Black Lives Matter). How do we overcome the struggle? We need to understand our culture /history if we truly want to stop this pattern but most importantly know who we are and where we are going (our real roots).
I wish I were taught my complete history and the greatness my ancestors had. It might have helped me fulfill my full potential and plan my future with my family as a culture. Let’s teach our children what we didn’t know so they can grow up proud of who they are. Do it for the culture.
8 cool things you can do with your kids or by yourself during black history month and beyond.
Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better. Maya Angelou
Every morning, greet your kids/ family with a new quote or fact that’s relevant to Black history.
Say them aloud all day. (I love this one).
2. Recreate a Black family’s journey using the Green Book.
SOURCE: The History Channel
The History Channel offers a wonderful introduction to this guide that was written to help Black Americans travel safely during the mid 20th century.
3. Create your own virtual museum dedicated to remembering slavery and its legacy.
Thirteen.org offers some powerful student examples and a downloadable template you can use to try the activity in your home.
4. Virtually visit the illustrious Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem, New York.
SOURCE: Emmett Till Project
The digital collections feature some amazing online exhibits, interviews, and podcasts.
5. Witness the realities of slavery and reconciliation first hand at the nation’s first slavery museum, the Whitney Plantation.
SOURCE: Whitney Plantation
The museum’s incredible online lesson plans teach people about what life was really like in antebellum America. This sounds scary but I’m definitely taken my son here. He needs to know how privileged he is.
6. Person of the day or week
Take time to talk about Black influencers and their accomplishments. Highlight a different person every day or week and center your lessons around them!
Explore categories like:
Heroes and iconic leaders
Scientists and mathematicians
Tip: Try to look beyond typical historical figures and popular celebrities. There are plenty of Black contributors kids may not have even heard of yet — use this chance to introduce them!
7. Worksheet activities
8. Virtual events
This year especially, there are plenty of online activities and events celebrating Black History Month. So why not choose a youth-appropriate ones your kids can participate in?
- Smithsonian Heritage and History Month Events
- Black History Every Month: Virtual Events That Inspire Action, Education, and Connection
I hope you take the time to have some fun learning black history. Teach your littles about the accomplishments and contributions of black Americans and share your ideas and trips in the comments section below.
DEUCES AND SMOOCHES,