Episode 75 | Teaching Black History in K-3 w/ Dawnavyn James

Season #2

In this enlightening episode titled "Teaching Black History in K-3," we're joined by the inspiring Dawnavyn James, an educator who brings Black history to the youngest of learners through song, storytelling, and critical thinking. Dawnavyn is not just a teacher; she's an innovator in the realm of education, admired for her holistic approach and her belief in the transformative power of knowledge.

Together, we'll explore Dawnavyn's creative strategies, such as using the song "Wade in the Water" to teach sight words along with the history of Harriet Tubman. We'll discuss why figures like Malcolm X resonate with the youth for their 'swag' and powerful ideas, and why Dawnavyn's mantra—"read for yourself and seek knowledge from various sources"—is so important for fostering critical thinking.

Also, we'll talk about Dawnavyn James's book, "Beyond February," a practical guide for educators looking to weave Black history into their daily curriculum and ensure it resonates with children all year long. Dawnavyn will share expert advice on using literature to introduce diverse historical figures, making space for counter stories, and aligning the Black history curriculum with educational standards.

I'll share my excitement about applying Dawnavyn's methods with my own children and how important it is to engage with different cultures. We both agree that Black history is not just for Black students and should be shared by all. We'll link Black history to present-day events, challenging our young ones to engage in critical conversations that matter.

Remember to follow Dawnavyn on Instagram at @queendomteaching and pick up her valuable resource "Beyond February" on routledge.com and Amazon. As always, we invite you to interact with the episode—leave a review, snap a photo, and share with us the impact it has on your thinking or your household.

Stay tuned for a conversation that not only educates but liberates, as we reaffirm our commitment to making Black history a vibrant, essential part of every classroom.