Black History Month 2021

Celebrating Black Canadian History and Excellence

Did you know that although the commemoration of Black History Month dates back to 1926 in the United States, Canada's official recognition of Black History Month began in 1996?

Did you know that the motion to recognize February as Black History Month nationally was made by Canada's first black female member of parliament, Honourable Jean Augustine?

Canada hosts a wealth of inspiring Black Canadian stories. We need to celebrate them!

​​​Although Black History Month is officially February 1- March 1, schools and classrooms are encouraged to embed and celebrate past and present Black excellence and histories throughout the entire year!

This resource provides links to explore Canadian Black History nationally, provincially and municipally.

Goals For This Year's Black History Month:

We will...

- provide our students with Canadian content and questions that spark critical thinking (i.e. Why is Canadian Black History underrepresented in our History books?).

- acknowledge and amplify famous Black Canadian peoples and histories by creating ways to share our newfound learning within our schools and communities.

- recognize important geographical sites within Canada pertaining to Black Canadian History.

- host discussions about Black representation and voices in our classroom materials (Whose stories are being told? Whose voices are missing? How can we increase Black Canadian voice and representation in our classroom and resources?).

- celebrate Black excellence in the accomplishments of past and present Black Canadians, and connect to how their lived experiences impact the lives of present-day Canadians.

Limestone District School Board Celebrates Local Black History and Black Excellence

Check Out Kingston's Black History Month Live Calendar!

Online Learning Opportunity!

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About this Event

Do you know of Mathieu da Costa? What happened in Amherstburg? About Richard Pierpoint and the Butler's Rangers? How Robert Sutherland contributed and saved Queens from having to amalgamate with U of T.

If you would like to learn more about this Canadian History. Join us this Saturday, February 6th, 2021 to do an online learning session. This session has been put together by Turner Consulting, HELM Life, and the Equity Equation.

This event is FREE but limited seats are available so register to be added in. Check out the YouTube clip below.

Black History Month Collaborative Learning Puzzle

Register Here:

Proud of our History - Black History Month

Periodic Table of Important Figures In Canadian Black History (Available in French and English)

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2021 Black History Month Kick-Off - History…Who We Are! By Ontario Black History Society

"Join us as we Kick-Off Black History month virtually on Sunday, January 31, 2021 at 1pm EST. History...Who We Are!

About this Event

New Speaker Series-Free Registration below

The COVID-19 pandemic has strained the heritage sector, including the OBHS. Additionally, the Black community has been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic. With these unprecedented events happening simultaneously with the global reckoning of anti-Black racism sparked by the Black Lives Matter movement, it’s even more important to know HISTORY!

This history continues, from the past to the present, even amidst a pandemic. History anchors us, especially during times like this.

Join us as we feature community recognition profiles, Black history, entertainment, museum tours and so much more.

History…Who We Are! "

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International Decade for People of African Descent (2015 -2024)

"There are so many ways in which we can celebrate and honour the messages, images, and history of black people, not just in February, but throughout the year. Parents for Diversity has put together a breadth of information about events, lesson plans, books, and other learning materials to celebrate people of African descent."

Celebrate Remarkable Black Canadians 365 Days of the Year!

"ETFO’s latest project, the 365 Black Canadian Curriculum, is part of a compilation of equity resources for elementary educators. These resources, which support Black Canadian history in Ontario schools on a daily basis, include a calendar; primary, junior, and intermediate lesson plans; a workshop for staff; and a poster. With this resource, educators will have historically factual information to support the learning of issues concerning race and discrimination, while ensuring safe learning environments for students to discuss these topics in a respectful and reflective manner, while also exploring the realities of Black Canadians."

Available In French and English
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Using Images to Spark Discussions

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"The 2021 ETFO Black History Month Poster (artist Leone McComas) explores how the commonly used and accepted map of our world is not accurate and rooted in bias and colonialism.

It uses themes of space and geography to encourage students to think critically about the world around them. The use Afrofuturism provides a glimpse into the limitless possibilities for young African Canadians."

As the Mae Jemison quote captures: “Never be limited by the limited imagination of others.”

Alongside each year's Black History Month Poster, ETFO provides a corresponding teaching guide.

28 Moments of Black Canadian History

"When it comes to Black History Month and the lessons you might have had in elementary school, what do you remember? "

"Although African American history is very important to know, the fact that it is the only thing we get to hear about highlights the great erasure of Black Canadians in our history lessons. We hope to address this issue with 28 Moments of Black Canadian History, Leap Year Edition. For each of the 29 days of this upcoming February, we will be releasing videos of a Black Youth speaking about their experiences in Canada, their goals, aspirations, and interests. They will then be giving a small history lesson on an important moment or figure in Black Canadian history. "

Through this project, we ultimately hope to establish a link between our present and our past, allowing us to have a greater understanding of our collective challenges and successes. If you're interested in knowing more about Black history in Canada, make sure to subscribe to our Youtube Channel and like this video. Comments are also welcomed! You can also follow us on Instagram , facebook or twitter @unilearnal"

What is 28 Moments of Black Canadian History ?

We need to know our collective past to move forward together...

Black History is Canadian History

Virtual Museum Lecture Series - Ontario's Racially Segregated Schools w/ Natasha Henry

Special Guest historian and President of the Ontario Black History Society Natasha Henry joins us to speak about the not-so-distant history of Ontario's racially segregated schools.

Podcast: The History of Slavery in Colonial Canada

Kyle G. Brown looks at slavery in colonial Canada in a two-part IDEAS series.

The interviews in this podcast explore historical connections to slavery and its systemic aftermath.
#BlackedOutHistory | Ontario Black History Society

The Ontario Black History Society

"Mission Statement: The Ontario Black History Society was founded in 1978 as a non-profit, charitable organization dedicated to the preservation, promotion, and study of Black history. The society was instrumental in the declaration of February as Black History Month across Canada, in identifying/supporting the plaquing of Black historic sites and identifying and addressing Black heritage issues."


Free Virtual Event Featuring Award-Winning Canadian Author Esi Edugyan!

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The Ontario Heritage Trust invites you and your classroom to tune in for a free pre-recorded lecture with award-winning Canadian author Esi Edugyan, coming to you virtually from Uncle Tom’s Cabin Historic Site.

Edugyan writes compelling historical fiction that explores Black lived experiences, centered on themes of identity, race and belonging. Her latest novel, Washington Black, is an epic coming-of-age story about a formerly enslaved boy who escapes and journeys around the world — including Nova Scotia and the Canadian Arctic — learning about freedom and his place in the world.

Join Edugyan for an inspiring talk that will help increase your students’ understanding of the importance of researching, sharing and telling Black stories. The talk will be followed by a pre-recorded question-and-answer segment from youth and leaders from Ontario’s Black heritage community.

This event is ideal for Grade 7 and up.

Learn about Uncle Tom’s Cabin Historic Site

As part of this screening, students will also hear from Steven Cook, Site Manager of Uncle Tom’s Cabin Historic Site. Located in Dresden, Ontario, this 5-acre museum complex celebrates real-life abolitionist and Person of National Historic Significance, Reverend Josiah Henson, and tells the stories of Ontario’s early Black settlements.

Don’t miss out!

Screening will be available for a limited time only.

  • February 18 from 8 a.m. to noon
  • February 23 from 8 a.m. to noon


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Exploring Black HIstory Month Through Arts and Literature

Digital Performances Through Prologue Performing Arts

February Newsletter

In celebration of Black History Month, we want to recognize the incredibly talented Black artists that we are so lucky to work with. In this month's newsletter, you will discover more about the work of Britta B, Leslie McCurdy, and Joaquín Núñez, whose digital performances can enhance the lessons you may have planned for the coming weeks. We have also included some resources to consider this month, and beyond.

no matter what you've been told / you deserve to be heard - Britta B

Were you inspired by Amanda Gorman's delivery of her poem at the inauguration of President Joe Biden? Participate in some writing exercises with Britta B and learn how she came to recognize her voice through spoken word poetry in her digital performance, Rebel with a Rhyme


Celebrate leading figures in Canadian and American Black History with McCurdy's one-woman plays, The Spirit of Harriet Tubman, and Things My Foursisters Saw.

Our ultimate goal should be to create totally inclusive curricula so that months like “Black History Month” are not necessary...Such inclusivity could lead to a truly enlightened citizenry - Excerpt from "My Love/Hate Relationship with Black History Month" by Leslie McCurdy
Read her full blog post HERE


Music is my way to express myself freely. I'm a person full of energy, and through music, I can transmit that energy to everyone. - Joaquín Núñez

In his virtual performance, Cuba Brazil Carnaval Experience, Núñez showcases music that is played for carnival, festivals, and community events.


Educational Resources



The 2021 ETFO Black History Month Poster by artist Leone McComas

Call for Programming Committee Members!

Are you an artist, educator or community member interested in arts education who wants to give back to your community?

Want to get involved with a leading arts education organization and experience some of Ontario's best arts education for young audiences?

If so, consider applying to join the
Prologue Performing Arts Program Committee!


Links to Websites and Resources to Compliment Your Classroom Learning

LDSB's Focus

We endeavor to continue working as a collective towards equitable outcomes in the LDSB. All Canadian voices deserve to be explored, represented, and shared. These publications are a commitment to our action.

For further inquiries or sharing opportunities, please feel free to contact Rae McDonald.