I have stated this previously: Black History is the history of the world, it is a global history.
And I have previously recommended a variety of books, and recommended a variety of platforms, but all my recommendations have been focused on classroom use and teacher-centered professional development. The history–while trying to be as inclusive and global as possible–has remained academic in nature. And it has remained, generally, about the past.
Now, my 7th and 8th grade history teacher taught me that history is the past, present, and future. If we want to know about tomorrow, we can look at our present. If we want to know about today, we can look at our past.
Time, and history, is interwoven. Bound to one another.
This lesson, and their teaching overall, ignited a passion for history; indeed, one of my majors in my undergraduate studies was history–and this passion is alive and well.
I see that history is more than numbers or facts, that history is hardly stagnant or irrelevant. History is stories and emotions, mind-blowing and saucy–yes, I said saucy.
But I am guilty of not bringing in every aspect of entertainment and joy to my history lessons. And I realized recently: I have never discussed what to do outside the classroom.
So this month — this Black History Month — I ask:
How are you, personally, committed to Black History Month?
Remember: Black History is the past, present, and future.
Remember: Black History is fun too! It doesn’t have to be facts, dry, or focused on rote learning. It can just be learning for learning’s sake. It can simply mean diversifying the content that makes you smile and laugh.
So, what beyond the classroom, do you do to celebrate Black History?
Again–remember: Black History is the past, present, and future; and, Black History is fun!
Need inspiration? Examples? No worries–I got you covered.
Author: Beverly Jenkins — saucy! (romance novels)
Instagram: @redactedhistory_ — mind-blowing (short stories/reels)
Podcast: Black History Year — stories and emotions (short & long episodes full of emotion)
I don’t know where you are on your DEI journey. I don’t know the limits, or limitless nature, of instruction and learning as it pertains to Black History Month–and any other group, or month long celebration.
But what I do know is:
- DEI work is a lifelong personal and professional commitment,
- Black History Month is every month,
- Every month is an opportunity to provide every group, and ourselves, a mirror and window to the world
And with all of that — I ask again: How are you, personally, committed to Black History Month? What do you do outside the classroom to make sure you know and celebrate every story and emotion of Black History–past, present, and future.