Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers. ~Charles W. Eliot

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Happy Black History Month!

Black History month started out as a week in 1926 when Carter G. Woodson created it.  In 1976 it became a month long celebration and February was assigned its designated month.  Ever since, February has been another reason to look at the great accomplishments made by African-Americans. Be sure to look at A&E Television Network's Biography/Black History website for facts, featured biographies, historical time-lines and trivia. And be sure to take a look at some of the new books for children and young adults that speak to the African American experience. Philip Hoose's 2009 Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice tells the true story of a 15-year old Montgomery, Alabama, high-school student who was arrested and jailed for refusing to give up her seat to a white passenger in 1955, nine months before Rosa Parks’ history-making protest on a city bus. Not only does this book provide a fascinating glimpse into history, it is also testament to the crucial role young people can take in social movements. 


Another teen trying to believe in himself and effect change is 14-year old Reese in Walter Dean Myers' Lockdown, a contemporary look at the life and struggles of an inner city youth.

Finally, middle graders might consider reading last year's National Book Award winner, Rita Williams-Garcia's One Crazy Summer and visit a summer camp run by the Black Panthers along with Delphine and her sisters. This book is also the 2011 Coretta Scott King (Author) Award winner and a 2011 Newbery Honor book.

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