Honoring Black History Month

#Teacher2Teacher  |  January 31, 2024
Honoring Black History Month

Honoring Black History Month

February might be the shortest month of the year, but it is a month that can be filled with impactful lessons across the curriculum.

Every February, the U.S. honors the contributions and sacrifices of African Americans who helped shape our nation. Black History is American History.

Black History Month celebrates the rich cultural heritage, triumphs, and adversities that are ingrained as part of our country's history. We can support our students as they learn more, discover cultural impacts, and follow movements through to the present day.

Here are some ideas to bring awareness and honor to Black History Month in your classroom:

  • Read books with Black characters
  • Create timelines of important moments in Black History
  • Research Black inventors and musicians to showcase their amazing contributions
  • Bring art and history together by displaying civil rights freedom movement posters
  • Honor some of the military’s most courageous veterans: Buffalo Soldiers, 54th Massachusetts, etc.
  • Set up a door decorating contest that honors Black History Month and get your students involved in the process of planning, creating, and decorating
  • Show ClassOrbit's videos of MLK Jr. or Civil Rights to the class and hold a whole-group discussion
  • Create brochures about some of the most influential figures and moments during the Civil Rights Movement. For example: the 14th Amendment, Jim Crow Laws, Brown vs. Board of Education, Montgomery Bus Boycott, March on Washington, The Civil Rights Act, etc.
  • Do a virtual visit of the incredible Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture
  • Listen to Dr. Martin Luther King’s ‘I Have a Dream’ speech
  • Dig deeper into the lives of countless other African Americans who've made a profound impact in history: self-made millionaire Madam C.J. Walker, astronaut Mae C. Jemison, open-heart surgeon Daniel Hale Williams, inventor Garret Morgan, media mogul Oprah Winfrey and "Father of Black History" Carter G. Woodson

Remember, Black History Month is an opportunity to understand Black histories, by going beyond stories of racism and slavery, and spotlighting Black achievement.

As an educator and student, continued engagement with history throughout the school year is vital as it helps give context for the present and allows us all to gain an appreciation for the experiences of others.

Marissa Hardy
Executive Director
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