In 1976 President Gerald Ford formally recognized February as Black History Month. In doing so, he urged Americans to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.”
Today, many students learn about the countless accomplishments of African Americans throughout American history. Children learn about George Washington Carver’s inventions, Harriet Tubman’s heroism and humanitarianism, Jackie Robinson’s athleticism and bravery and Colin Powell’s and Barack Obama’s becoming the first African Americans to hold the offices of Secretary of State and President, respectively.
Children at our Sylvan Hills Child Development Center did some great work with their parents. Classroom F researched about famous African Americans and created some awesome presentations about what they learned. Classroom N learned about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and presented what they learned to each other.
How can you help young children learn and celebrate Black History Month? Here are some ideas:
- Gayle’s Preschool Rainbow has a long list of great ideas from center activities to books and dramatic play.
- Preschool Plan It offers more activity ideas including math and science.
- DLTK’s Growing Together provides craft ideas including coloring pages.
- Education.com has timelines, math worksheets and arts and crafts related to Black History Month.
- Field trips: Georgia offers a great variety of places to go to learn more about African American figures that have made a huge difference in history.
- Center for Civil and Human Rights in Atlanta
- Blackness in Latin America at the Rialto Center for the Arts in Atlanta
- The King Center in Atlanta
- The First African Methodist Episcopal Church in Athens
- Albany Civil Rights Institute in Albany
- Ralph Mark Gilbert Civil Rights Museum in Savannah
- Sapelo Island near Savannah
What have you done to celebrate Black History Month?