Thinking about Black History

J.Galbreath, B. Gasior, Gifted Resource Specialists

Black History Rap Song - The Gifted Youngsters - Best Black History Rap

Because of Them We Can

The mission of Because of Them We Can is to educate and connect a new generation to heroes who have paved the way. Challenge your students to create a campaign for someone who has been a leader to others.

Maya Angelou, Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X, Rosa Parks, Harriet Tubman, Charles Drew, Mae Jemison, Stevie Wonder, Janelle Monáe, Bessie Coleman

Hidden Figures

This Hidden Figures lesson, "When Computers Wore Skirts" is for high school but contains links to many resources that can be used with all grade levels. Timely information about the three central characters in the movie and their important contributions to the NASA space program, computing and the advancement of African American women.

History Through the Arts

ARTS EDGE - African American History - Articles, websites, lessons, full units - the Arts Edge website has a wealth of information for teaching this important topic. The lessons integrate the arts, are organized by topic and grade levels and are ready to use.

This TED video about African American Social Dance offers a history of African-American social dance as a way for enslaved Africans to keep cultural traditions alive.

Using Dr. Seuss - Sneetches and Segregation

In the story The Sneetches, written by Dr. Seuss, yellow bird-like creatures take students on an adventure where green stars become the symbol of discrimination and privilege. Let these resources help guide a discussion about segregation.

The Sneetches Video Book

Sneetches and the Segregation Video

Short and Extended Response Activities

Museum Resources

The National Museum of African American History has a wealth of information to share with students. Check out the Explore section on the website for exhibits, collections, primary sources and multiple perspectives.

The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center also has a variety of lessons organized by grade level.

Teaching Tolerance

The Teaching Tolerance website has lessons for all areas and grade levels to teach Black History, tolerance, respect, acceptance and appreciation of diversity. Easily search the "classroom resources" section by topic and grade level. Free film kits can also be ordered.

Lessons from NEA

NEA has put together a nice collection of Black History Month lessons and resources. Lesson plans, interactives, background information, sports, arts, literature - lots of useful resources are included.

Columbus Metropolitan Library Programs - MLK and Black History

The Columbus Metropolitan Library (CML) will celebrate Black History Month in February. Click here to print a CML Black History month flyer listing all upcoming events and programs. CML will also celebrate Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday with programs at its Martin Luther King and Shepard branches.

NewseumED - Civil Rights Movement

NewseumED requires a free subscription but it is a valuable resource for access to lots of historical information and perspectives. It has quality online resources to cultivate the skills to authenticate, analyze and evaluate information from a variety of sources and to provide historical context to current events.
Story Time with Mr. Beat - Slavery in the 13 Colonies

African Americans in the Colonies

The Colonial Williamsburg Official History site is a great Introduction to Colonial African American Life. Online books are also available:

Colonial People - Enslaved African-Americans

Colonial People - Enslaved Farm Family of Two

Use Simulations to Engage Students

Explore This Powerful Underground Railroad Interactive

Escape From Slavery is a powerful interactive experience. Students imagine that they are slaves in the year 1870 who have escaped on the Underground Railroad. They are asked to share the stories of their courageous journeys and to describe the brave people who helped along the way.

Pathways to Freedom Interactive

The Pathways to Freedom Interactive allows students to travel back to the 1800s and become eyewitnesses to history. They'll become young slaves who must make some important and life-changing decisions.

National Geographic Underground Railroad

The Underground Railroad Interactive from National Geographic has students imagine they are a slaves belonging to a farmer in 1850s Maryland. Students can choose the hard, dangerous trek to freedom.

Africans in America - Slavery

The Africans in America website chronicles the history of racial slavery in the United States -- from the start of the Atlantic slave trade in the 16th century to the end of the American Civil War in 1865 -- and explores the central paradox that is at the heart of the American story: a democracy that declared all men equal but enslaved and oppressed one people to provide independence and prosperity to another.

Dig Into The Documents

Black History Primary Documents

Freedom’s Ring is Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech, animated. Here students can compare the written and spoken speech, explore multimedia images, listen to movement activists, and uncover historical contexts. This website and the ones below are stellar!

The Speech

Slavery and the Making of an American- (Hear the voices of slaves.)

Black History Document Detective

Columbus Ohio Digital African American Resources

Make a Personal Connection with Ohio History

African Americans in Ohio

Give students time to explore the links below before challenging them to connect with our history.

African Americans in Ohio

African Americans in Southern Ohio

African American History in Ohio

Ohio Black Laws

Play with Data

Black Demographics

The website contains data tables and reports covering topics such as geographic distribution, marital status, educational attainment, family and household type, labor force status, occupational distribution, earnings, family income, and poverty status.

Dr. Martin Luther King

Use Timelines and Maps

Exploring Timelines

Everywhere you look, black culture, talent and expression have played an enormous role in shaping America’s past and present. These timelines are a great resource for students to explore changes over time.

"In the Know" Timeline for Kids: African-American History

African American Lives

Time Then and Now

Separate is Not Equal

Mapping African American History

The Mapping African American History Project maps African History of New York. The Places Navigator allows students to explore detailed views of modern and historic maps that connect events, people, community and culture.

Dive into Books

Read and Explore Ruby Bridges ( K-2)

Read about Ruby Bridges and the Civil Rights Movement In November 1960. Ruby Bridges became the first African American child to integrate an all-white elementary school.

Poetry and Black History

The Poetry Foundation has put together a useful list of poems, articles, and podcasts that explore African American history and culture.

Musical and Artistic Contributions

Drop Me Off in Harlem - What happens when great minds congregate in the same time and place? How do creative individuals both reflect and influence the places and time periods in which they live? Drop Me Off in Harlem explores these questions in the context of the vibrant, complex, and unique moment in time that was the Harlem Renaissance.

Taking Action

Discovering My Identity

This Discovering My Identity lesson from Teaching Tolerance can spur student thinking about race and identity as well as taking action to make a difference in the world. All materials are included and ready to use.
ISTE 2016 EdTekTalks | Janice & Marley Dias on promoting diversity in media with #1000BlackGirlBooks
Marley Dias on social action & being yourself (Feb. 19, 2016) | Charlie Rose

Desegregation of Columbus

Check out these newspaper articles about the The Desegregation of Columbus Schools.