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Art&Seek Jr: Get Inspired with Black History Month

Art&Seek Jr. is one mom‘s quest to find activities to end the seemingly endless chorus of the “I’m Bored Blues” while having fun herself.  Impossible you say? Check back on Tuesdays for kid-friendly events that are fun for adults, too.

I love the opportunity to teach my child about American history and the men and women who sacrificed to make this country great.

Case in point, elementary school curriculum is jammed packed in February with Black History Month and Presidents Day. As a result, Rose has answered the “what-did-you-learn-in-school-today” dinner time question with stories of presidents and Civil Rights leaders. It makes my heart feel so good to know her school has inspired her and her classmates to want to know more about Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks. I hear opportunity knocking.

You can seize the opportunity to inspire your children with these Black History month events:

“Superheroes” is always the word that springs to mind when I think of the young men who fought in World War II. True, they didn’t don capes or have S’s on their chests. But they saved the world plain and simple, and many weren’t more than kids when they did it. You and your children can see one of these tales of valor tonight when  UT Dallas presents a screening of  the film Red Tails. The film tells the story of the Tuskegee Airmen, a group of African-American servicemen who flew in World War II. The film, directed by George Lucas of Star Wars fame, is rated PG-13, so it’s probably better suited for older children.

What if the greats of the Negro League had been allowed to play in the majors? Photo: Allen Public Library

Baseball lovers of all ages are in luck, because we’ve  got two cool hardball events on the calendar. Author Bob May will discuss his book The Best Season, the First Ninety Games at the Allen Public Library on Feb. 21. His book explores the question: What if Major League Baseball had been integrated before Jackie Robinson? Bob will give fascinating statistics on how baseball could have been different had black players been allowed to participate in the majors during its segregated era.

The Children’s Center at the Dallas Public Library will offer up its own baseball themed event for younger audiences in Civil Rights History: Before You Could Say “Jackie Robinson” on Feb. 23. The program, which explores American history from the Civil War to the Civil Rights movement, explains how race relations in baseball reflected important social and cultural changes in the United States.

Mini jazz devotees won’t want to miss Library Live! Black History with Rocelle on Feb. 23 at the Highland Hills branch of the Dallas Public Library. Kids will learn songs of jazz history from African chants to modern blues and jazz. Also, a special focus will be given to pioneering women in jazz vocal music. Yay, Girl Power!

Therese Powell is an Art&Seek calendar coordinator and KERA-TV producer.  She spends most of her free time seeking out adventures for her 7-year-old daughter, Rose.  Tell us about your your ideas for quirky kid adventures by leaving a comment. Or e-mail Therese at tpowell@kera.org.