Saturday, January 18, 2014

Fabulous Freebies: Celebrating African American History Month

With Martin Luther King Jr. Day coming up in two days and African American History month following in a couple weeks, it seemed like it was about time to share some of my favorite timely freebies with you.  Comb through the links below and you can come up with material for every day of the month.  


  1. Scholastic has a Math Hunt game that teaches students a bit about African American history and requires them to use math to answer the questions.  The skills tested are not super advanced (reading graphs, estimating, adding, etc), but it is worth checking out.  It covers a range of topics and is interdisciplinary.
  2. Beatrice Lumpkin has created an excellent pdf complete with some of the history of math in Africa.  There are games and drawing activities you can have your students do to practice proportions and logic.   

Language Arts 

  1. Check out 10 African American authors everyone should read
  2. The first is a template for making an "I Have a Dream" speech booklet.  It is designed for the middle elementary grades.  Students are asked to color the pages, glue on tabs, and reflect on their own dreams.  As they work they will read about MLK's life and work.  It teaches children about his desire that all people be treated with respect and equality.
  3. The Harlem Renaissance was a time when African American arts and literature thrived.  PBS has an online lesson plan to teach your students more about it.


  1. Check out these biographies of 10 great African Americans who fought justice.  The lesson packet includes a couple activities.
  2. One of the coolest resources I've found this year is an oral history archive devoted to famous African American leaders.  There is a wealth of primary sources here.  Your students can listen to   Maya Angelou and 100's of others tell their stories.
  3. Have students complete a web quest on the Buffalo Soldiers.  This handout comes with clear instructions, a printable handout and answer key.
  4. Give your students a virtual tour of the national Martin Luther King Jr. memorial.  Student can read the quotes inscribed on the walls at the site and see pictures of the memorial.  Teachers can also find lesson plans at this site.


  1. Check out the online article Black Inventors A-Z.
  2. Want to turn a lesson on African American inventors into a project?  Check it out.
  3. Have students complete a tic-tac-toe project on an African American inventor.

General (other websites with useful collections)


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