Photo credit: [Untitled photo of boy reading book] (N.D.). Retrieved February 7, 2016 from http://www.bet.com/news/national/2014/03/17/where-are-the-black-people-in-children-s-books.html

Black History isn’t a collection of lessons and people to be studied during the shortest month of the year. Black History is American History; it should be taught and celebrated to prevent the mistakes of our past from being repeated. Until the education system catches up, it is the responsibility of parents to ensure our children learn the REST of America’s history. We’ve come up with a few DIY activities to integrate Black History into your family’s home life all year!

  1. Host a Black History Brunch

Photo credit: [Untitled photo of biscuit bar] (N.D.). Retrieved February 7, 2016 from http://www.pinterest.com
Photo credit: [Untitled photo of biscuit bar] (N.D.). Retrieved February 7, 2016 from http://www.pinterest.com
Invite children to dress up as a person from Black History. Have each guest prepare responses to share with the group. Set-up a soul food brunch buffet and serve yummy treats like southern biscuits, mini chicken and waffles, individual servings of greens, corn bread muffins, etc. Have note pads for each kid to take notes and ask questions at the end to review. The child with the most correct responses will win a prize! Each month host the event with a different theme like black artists, black poets, black jazz musicians, etc. The costumes and yummy food will keep the brunch fun while the conversation and presentations will be a learning opportunity for all!

  1. Host a Black Authors Book Club

Not only will a monthly book club meeting with their peers foster a love of reading but the possibilities to learn about black history and to introduce new authors will have a positive effect on your child.

Photo credit: [Untitled photo of boy reading book] (N.D.). Retrieved February 7, 2016 from http://www.bet.com/news/national/2014/03/17/where-are-the-black-people-in-children-s-books.html
Photo credit: [Untitled photo of boy reading book] (N.D.). Retrieved February 7, 2016 from http://www.bet.com/news/national/2014/03/17/where-are-the-black-people-in-children-s-books.html
Each month, a different child will host the meeting at his home. The host will select the book for everyone to read (with the only requirement being that it must have a black author or it must focus on black history). Provide snacks, a few questions and one craft or activity about the book to make this event something your child will look forward to every month!

 

  1. Introduce Black Inventors
    Photo credit: [Untitled photo of boy smiling over stoplight craft] (N.D.). Retrieved February 7, 2016 from http://www.pinterest.com
    Photo credit: [Untitled photo of boy smiling over stoplight craft] (N.D.). Retrieved February 7, 2016 from http://www.pinterest.com

So much of our everyday life is improved because of the innovative designs and work of black inventors. One week in each month, introduce a black inventor and have a craft, meal or lesson every evening. For example, on Sunday evening, introduce a book that explains how Garrett Morgan invented the traffic light in 1923. Monday, on the way to school, count the number of traffic lights you drive by. Tuesday, have the little one make a stoplight craft (complexity will depend on your child’s age). Wednesday, have your little one spread Nutella on top of graham crackers and use M&Ms to make a dessert that resembles a stoplight. Thursday, have your child wear one of the stoplight’s three colors in Morgan’s honor. Friday, have a family game night where you play a few rounds of Red Light Green Light.

The goal is to ensure your child has a well-rounded knowledge of their history as a black American. By making the lessons fun, you will help them absorb and retain the information. These activities will also strengthen your bond with your child while teaching one of the most important lessons our black children can learn: melanin is not a genetic flaw or hindrance. Our children are capable of being and making great contributions to our society just as so many other of our black brothers and sisters have done in the past.

Written By: Tabitha Keese, Staff Writer, Modern Domestic, Founder of Shipwrecked on Fabulous Island Blog

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