Celebrate Black History Month

Carter Godwin Woodson

Create engaging lessons using technology and help your students celebrate and understand the importance of Black History Month.

Black History Month, also known as African American History Month, is an annual observance in the United States and many other countries around the world. The observance recognizes the history and important figures in the African diaspora.

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”. This week was chosen because it coincided with the birthday of Abraham Lincoln on February 12 and of Frederick Douglass on February 14, both of which dates black communities had celebrated together since the late 19th century. Negro History Week was the center of the equation. The thought-process behind the week was never recorded, but scholars acknowledge two reasons for its birth: recognition and importance. Woodson felt deeply that at least one week would allow for the general movement to become something annually celebrated. Also, after the ten year long haul to successfully complete his “Journal of Negro History,” he realized the subject deserved to resonate with a greater audience. ~ Wikipedia

The words of Franklin Thomas remind us that we still have a long way to go.

One day our descendants will think it incredible that we paid so much attention to things like the amount of melanin in our skin or the shape of our eyes or our gender instead of the unique identities of each of us as complex human beings.

His words also remind us that knowing the past will open doors to our future.

Open these doors and utilize technology to provide for an engaging lesson or simple discussion for students of all ages. In celebrating Black History Month, students will learn that we all share so much in common.

Black History Month by Romulus Education

Romulus Black History Month is a quiz-based application of iOS devices designed to help students acquaint themselves with the subject of Black History.

This free app contains 100 questions addressing major topics in Black History from Colonial America to the present, with some World History questions added for good measure. All questions include explanations so that users can gain additional context when they miss a question.

Alabama Civil Rights Trail

Walk in the footsteps of the Civil Rights Movement by exploring the people, places and events that brought Alabama into the international spotlight and changed the course of history. The official Alabama Civil Rights Trail app helps you:

• Discover civil rights landmarks across the state
• Plan your visit to Birmingham, Montgomery, Selma, Tuskegee and other cities that were pivotal in the Civil Rights Movement
• Explore an interactive timeline that takes you through the struggle for equality, from Jim Crow and mob violence to desegregation and the Civil Rights Act
• Browse biographies of famous figures like Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King Jr., then learn where you can visit to relive their legacies
• View maps of civil rights destinations within each featured city

SFT Black History Radio

This Radio app randomly plays over 50 songs honoring African American History including biographical songs of great Black Americans such as Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Rosa Parks, Sojourner Truth, Harriet Tubman, and Jackie Robinson. These songs address African American themes of pride, history and culture, making a great addition to any classroom year round, but especially in honor and celebration of Black History Month. Primarily geared for 2nd – 6th grade, this app can be enjoyed by all. Songs come from a wide variety of Songs For Teaching artists. The app costs 99 cents.

The 1619 Project Podcast

In August of 1619, a ship carrying more than 20 enslaved Africans arrived in the English colony of Virginia. America was not yet America, but this was the moment it began. No aspect of the country that would be formed here has been untouched by the 250 years of slavery that followed. On the 400th anniversary of this fateful moment, it is time to tell the story. “1619” is a New York Times audio series hosted by Nikole Hannah-Jones. The podcast is best suited for a high school audience.

Black History Inventors

From fountain pens, mops, batteries, paints, furnaces, rotary engines to anything you can imagine inventors of color have used brain power to create it all. Their variety of inventions are extraordinary. Black History Inventors app includes many amazing women and men. Some individuals received U.S. patents. You can listen to historical inventor stories through your speaker or headphones spoken by a real person. Scan through all of the inventors to learn more about their contributions to modern living.

African Americans in STEM

STEM African American Pioneer Flash Cards: Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (Plus Medical and Health). This historical education app will teach children about the amazing contributions of African Americans to the STEM and Medical/Health fields. Against the odds, these 106 individuals excelled and helped propel the United States forward.

The Book of Negroes Historical Guide

This interactive companion outlines the history of the trans-Atlantic slave trade and how this is reflected and examined in Lawrence Hill’s award-winning novel and BET Television mini-series, The Book of Negroes. The six-part BET mini-series follows the life of Aminata Diallo, a young African girl kidnapped by slave traders and brought across the Atlantic to North America. In the course of her long and hard life, Aminata is a witness to major events in the slave trade and the history of Black North Americans. Over seven chapters, the app provides a timeline of Black history from 1705 to the present day. In addition, it explores the historical grounding of both the novel and series in the original Book of Negroes historical document, which identified Black slaves who fought for the British during the American Revolution. Using images, videos, and interactive maps, the guide follows the far-reaching impact of the trans-Atlantic slave trade. For educational settings, the guide features optional discussion questions and further investigation of the various topics. An intuitive interface allows users to swipe, tap, and scroll through chapters to engage with interactive features in a linear or nonlinear fashion, and gain a deeper understanding of the historical events portrayed in The Book of Negroes.

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