Black History Month Representation
Do you know who invented the stoplight? What about the person who invented the refrigerator, most of your household domestic products, or even the Hela cell? Maybe you should know about the Hela cell. The cell line is responsible for many modern day medications, vaccines and groundbreaking medical research. Did you know that the key scientist that invented the Moderna Covid 19 Vaccine is Black? If you don’t know these important African Americans, chances are neither do your students.
During Black History Month teachers often rely on the same figures, Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks. Many educators don’t take the time to teach about current events and other historical figures. Some educators don’t go beyond the standards and curriculum because they don’t have the option to teach outside the box.
Responsive educators need to take the time to educate themselves. How are we teaching black history month? How can we include culturally responsive materials in the curriculum? How can we change the norms to do more than the standards by including modern day news and events from Floyd Wright to the scientist behind the vaccine. How can we tie in current events and historical figures to the curriculum?
As the country changes around us it's becoming more important to educate and expose ourselves to each other's cultures. Teachers have the unique position to make sure all students feel represented and valued. We need to continue to expose students to different cultures and races. This not only helps students feel confident about themselves but it also helps us learn to respect each other's cultural differences.
So this Black History Month, The Teacher Monster Club challenges you to learn more, to teach students little known facts, and to broaden our global view on representation. So that we not only inspire this generation but the generations to come.