Black History Month Lesson Plans

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In honor of February being Black History Month, we wanted to take time to give some background on how this celebration came to be and give some lessons ideas related to the holiday. Originally, Black History month was only a week long, starting in the 1920s, and was created by a man named Carter G. Woodson. He chose the month of February because both Fredrick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln were born in February. The celebration expanded to the whole month in 1976. This month has been recognized as a time to celebrate notable achievements and moments in African American history.

If you are struggling to come up with a fun lesson to teach your students, here are a few ideas:

Martin Luther King Jr. Day: Explain to the students who he was and discuss his “I Have a Dream” Speech. Afterwards, ask each student to write down what their dream is. This can either be a simple worksheet activity. Or, if you would like to do a classroom bulletin board display, you can have each student write it on a white board and take their picture for the board.

Rosa Parks Changed the Rules: Create a diagram of the Montgomery bus Rosa Parks rode. During the lesson, students will learn about what the rules for white and black people were on the bus and complete the diagram by illustrating seating arrangements on a typical bus that ran in Montgomery, Alabama in 1955.

The Sneetches and Segregation: This can be done two ways: read Dr. Seuss’ story of The Sneetches to the students or, watch the video version as a class. Afterwards, discuss the story and pose critical thinking questions to the students in relation to the story.