Friday, February 03, 2012

Can Black History Month Instill a Passion for Education? (Repost)

{International Prayer has moved to Mondays. Today I offer a repost of last year’s Black History Month post.}

February is Black History Month. To be honest I wish we did a better job at teaching about historical contributions made by African-Americans during the other eleven months so that we do not need to designate a special month. But while the debate over Black History Month may continue, I have a different bone to pick. I find myself wondering if African-American children carry with them a passion for education and for personal growth. Are we instilling this sort of passion in them or are we simply hoping they stick with it long enough to get a college degree? Could Black History Month become a vehicle for instilling such a passion in blacks and in children of all races?

I am not sure of the percentage of schools across this country that plan to honor Black History Month. Of those that will, I wonder how many move beyond a series of canned lessons based on what some Ph. D. thinks our kids need. How many teachers will find their way outside of their annual lesson plan in an attempt to truly inspire their students to follow in the footsteps of the many great Americans who had the courage to challenge stereotypes? Black history is about great people and until it becomes more than just another month our children will not be able to use the wisdom of our past as a light to guide their future.

As an African-American and a parent I must find a way to instill a passion for learning in my children. Black History Month is a great opportunity to help expand my kids’ horizons. Hopefully by teaching about great men and women of the past I will help my boys will learn a bit about themselves. I pray parents and teachers find ways to use Black History Month as a tool for instilling a passion for education in children of all races. Is it possible that the past might again be an agent for change in the present?

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