January 29, 2019

Black History Month: Resources and Activities for Your Classroom

Confessions of a Frazzled Teacher

While I'm glad there is an entire month dedicated to Black History, I don't think teachers should only teach about Black History this month. It should be taught throughout the school year. Also, there is a huge push, at least in my district, to focus on people besides Rosa Parks and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. However, I am finding that through this push, my students do not know some of the most notable in history. Personally, I strive to find ways to teach my students about as many people and events as I can!

Now that I said that, I can get off of my soapbox and share some resources to use this month (or anytime) this year.

Disclaimer: There are links to resources in this post. Clicking on them will not cost you anything extra but will earn me a commission if you buy something.


Books

This is always my favorite category. I have so many books that I love reading this month that I don't get to them all. Keep in mind that next month is Women's History, so some of these books definitely work during March.







I could keep going! There are so many amazing books that I love to read, including fiction and non-fiction. One thing I do like to emphasize are books written about children. Students that see others their age doing incredible things is inspiring.

Music

I am obsessed with using music in the classroom. Music helps students with their reading fluency, gets them moving, and evokes strong emotions.




It's fun to read about famous musicians and then listen to the music. These songs also work well as dancing brain breaks, during quiet time, as background music, or having students draw while listening to the music. Click the pic below to read my Fluency Through Music blog post. There, you will find FREE musical big books (and more songs) that you can use this month.

Fluency Through Music:  Using music to help your students build fluency when reading.

Activities:

* My favorite activity goes with Henry's Freedom Box. Use giant moving boxes (I got mine from Walmart). Let students sit inside the box so they can experience what this was like for Henry. It's an extremely powerful activity. Afterwards, I have my students write about the experience. (Please note: It's optional for my students to get in the box, but I have never had a student opt out.)


Confessions of a Frazzled Teacher

* This year, my boys have been obsessed with figuring out who is the greatest basketball player ever, Steph Curry or Michael Jordan (LeBron James was mentioned and discarded). Because of this debate, we will research stats to compare and contrast the two. I see a giant Venn diagram made out of hula hoops in our future. Side note: I could just tell them the answer is Michael Jordan of course! I am a Chicago girl that grew up with M.J. in the 90's.

* Along with my obsession with books, I also have an obsession with task cards. Here are some of the ones that I have made that we will definitely be using. Click the pics to see more information about them.

Black History Inventors 3 Digit Addition Task Cards     Black History Task Cards

* I mentioned brain breaks with music. This can be done in other ways too. One example is celebrating Garrett Morgan with a game of Red Light/Green Light. Another way is to work on choreographing a dance like Debbie Allen.

What do you do to celebrate Black History Month in your classroom?

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