90 Picture Books for 90 Years of Black History Celebration

In 1926, ninety years ago, the group now known as The Association for the Study of African American Life and History sponsored a week in February to promote achievements of peoples with African ancestry.  February, being the birth month of Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, seemed the ideal choice. After ninety years, we still celebrate in February, except no longer just a week, but now for the entire month.

The best way to celebrate Black History Month with your children is to read to them!

There are many informational books about Civil Rights, slavery, and African Americans’ great accomplishments. Black History Month can be celebrated by remembering those who have contributed to our past or by inspiring those who will create future history. I have prepared a book list, 90 Picture Books for 90 Years of Black History Celebration, which focuses on the past and also features African American children as main characters in everyday situations.

The initial motivation for this list began when assisting Toledo Public Schools with the Real Men READ-y program. This program pairs African American males with students to develop an interest in reading. Program administrators requested books that would interest their students with a focus on establishing pride in African American heritage. According to the Cooperative Children’s Book Center, over 3,500 picture books were reviewed in 2014 and only 5% featured African American characters.  As a result of this, a child’s self-esteem could be affected in a negative way. To counteract this, we need to lift up our children with encouraging books that help African American children build confidence, pride, and self-acceptance, exactly what this book list sets out to accomplish.

All children, no matter what race, should read a variety of books that have characters that look, act, and believe differently, so we all can appreciate the diversity around us!

Here is a sampling of books from the booklist:90 Books for BHM-page-001Click HERE to get the printable, complete version of 90 Picture Books for 90 Years of Black History Celebration

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Courtesy photo of guest blogger

Courtesy photo of guest blogger

Our guest blogger today is Angela Bronson. She currently works for the Toledo-Lucas County Public Library as a Children’s Librarian at the Kent Branch and is pursuing her MLIS at Wayne State University.

Please note that as a guest post, the views expressed here do not represent the official position of ALA or ALSC.

If you’d like to write a guest post for the ALSC Blog, please contact Mary Voors, ALSC Blog manager, at alscblog@gmail.com.

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