Remembering The Color of Our History

Before Black History Month, we had black history week, called “Negro History Week”:

The precursor to Black History Month was created in 1926 in the United States, when historian Carter G. Woodson and the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History announced the second week of February to be “Negro History Week”.[9] This week was chosen because it coincided with the birthday of Abraham Lincoln on February 12 and of Frederick Douglass on February 20, both of which dates black communities had celebrated together since the late 19th century.[9]


Fully Remembering

This is a powerful time to look back and remember our common history, the blended democracy we call America. Our history is filled with both wonderful times and challenging themes, a balance of ideas that can only be honored if it is fully remembered. So many people have loved the new African Museum on the mall in Washington, DC! The displays reveal a much more tangible recounting of Black History. We can touch history more fully.

Our History in Schools

Our schools celebrate black history month in order to more fully remember our shared history with the African diaspora. This is the time to look back to the roots of slavery, the emergence of Black song and religion and the future forward as represented in the current administration’s diversity. Our education can help to draw out the history, and importantly, draw us together as we learn more deeply.

Learning Well is Learning Deeply

The foundations of learning are the roots of our subjects and remembering slavery is no exception. More importantly is the positive influence and contribution of the black experience to our country. Our diversity is wide and deep, and learning well about our diversity means digging deeper, better remembering, and bringing that learning forward to make better informed decisions today. Black History month gives us another opportunity to learn more deeply about our past in order to inform our future.

Dr. Robert A. Southworth, Jr.

Dr. Robert A. Southworth, Jr.

Share this article:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More from EdSpeak

Discover the tools and strategies modern schools need to help their students grow.

Community Schools Reform

As a seasoned researcher of K-12 public schools and someone dedicated to improving the quality, equity, and creativity in education, I wholeheartedly support the proposal

Read More »

Subscribe to EdSpeak!

The SchoolWorks Lab Blog, connecting teaching to policy through research.