Ever heard the saying, "Those that don't know history are doomed to repeat it"? It reminds us of the crucial role that history plays in life. And few things fascinate us more than knowing where we came from and how others before us lived. Knowing this can help us understand our reality and maybe even answer some of the nagging questions about our ancestors.
How do we teach black history to kids? How do we teach them about the incredible history of our ancestors? How do we get the lessons and the celebration of black history year-round?
Teaching, learning, and celebrating black history can be fun and engaging. We have compiled seven simple, fun, and inexpensive ways to teach your kids about black history.
1. Read Children's Books That Celebrate Black History
One of the best ways to teach your kids about black history is through children's books. There are many wonderful books written to celebrate black history by African authors, black female authors, African-American authors and many more! It is great to expose your children to such books so that they learn about black history.
It is also important to keep in mind that when teaching your kids about black history, it is great to give them a balanced view of black history. That means teaching children both the pleasant and not-so-pleasant sides of history.
Kids need to learn about the empowering side of black history from the heroes and heroines, who have contributed to history, to achievements made by our ancestors, to black joy, and so much more. They also need to learn about the struggles and pain that our ancestors went through and how they overcame them.A mother and daughter reading about a legendary queen, Idia from the Benin Kingdom.
Reading about black history helps kids grow up with a sense of pride in who they are and where they come from, as well as; an appreciation of everything they have now.
2. Watch Documentaries About Black History
Another way of teaching kids about black history is by watching documentaries/shows about black history with your little ones. Documentaries are not only educational but can also be very entertaining for children. Your kids will learn so much from these documentaries and they will love hearing the stories of what their ancestors went through.
You can watch documentaries together and then discuss them afterwards such as who your family members were and how they lived. By watching these shows, you will be able to teach your kids about black history while having fun at the same time.
3. Visit Museums That Celebrate African-American History
Visiting museums is a great way to teach and celebrate black history. Museums are often a safe place for children to learn about history, and they can be a fun experience for the whole family.
Many museums have special programs for children. Some museums even have education programs for kids, where they learn about different aspects of black history interactively. For example, some museums have programs where you can make your African mask or play instruments from Africa. This helps kids understand the black culture better and see how it relates to them personally.
4. Visit Historic Landmarks & Sites in Your Area
Exploring historic landmarks and sites in your area can make black history come alive and fun.
These can be as simple as a visit to an old plantation house or a site where a famous abolitionist lived, or they can be more elaborate like a trip on the Underground Railroad. The important thing is that these visits will help your child understand how the past shaped our present and can give them a sense of pride in their heritage.
5. Cook Different Foods
Cooking food is a great way to explore black history with your kids. It may sound a bit unconventional, but it is a great way for you and your kids to cook soul food, African foods, Caribbean foods and explore different black aspects of black history and culture.
For example, let's say you want to make some fried chicken or collard greens. You can talk about the history of these foods, alongside how they were made. You can also talk about how these foods have been altered over time due to different influences, reasons or factors.
Cooking together will also help strengthen your bond with your child and deepen their knowledge about their culture.
6. Find Free Black History Worksheets or Printables
Last on our list is finding free Black history worksheets or printables to help your child learn about Black History. These are great ways to engage your children in learning about Black History. You can find free worksheets or printables online from the many different websites that offer them. We also have a collection of free worksheets that can help you teach kids about black history.
Ultimately, learning about black history is one of the easiest and most important things you can teach your kids. Hopefully, these resources will give parents and guardians some different ideas to try out. There are many more out there, so take the time to find what works for you and your family. The best part is: you're teaching your children to appreciate the importance of this history and culture. All you have to do is get started!