Wednesday, April 9, 2014

From Degradation to Appreciation!

I am so thankful for my parents sending me to great schools which enabled me to have a solid, thorough education.  However, I was one of very few African American students in my classes which made the study of Early Black History extremely awkward.  I dreaded the 1-2 pages in my history books that depicted Early Black Americans in a degrading, shameful way.  I saw black people portrayed as helpless and inadequate; never as strong or courageous.  Therefore, as a young black girl among 20+ white students, I carried lots of embarrassment towards that early time period in American History.  

Fast Forward 20+ years...

I was told of all the benefits of homeschooling that my children would receive. But, no one told me all the wonderful things that I would receive; one being a transformed mind!  My shameful views have turned into a deep appreciation and admiration for Black history...freedom from the enslavement of men.  As I weave God's Story into American history, I see His sovereign hand and work throughout all time periods even through the darkest times of slavery.  It all points me to the most glorious history...freedom from the enslavement of sin!

The Lord used our Maryland & Michigan study to enlighten my mind to the courage, strength, determination, and tenacity of two great Women in History...Harriet Tubman & Sojourner Truth.  After reading aloud, "Meet Addy" the first book in the American Girl (Addy) Series, we were inspired to dig deeper into the African Americans role in Early American History.

Harriet Tubman, born in Dorchester County, Maryland, was the leader of the Underground Railroad who for 8 years led over 300 slaves to freedom!  She was also a spy for the Union Army and a nurse who helped save the lives of countless soldiers during the Civil War. 

Sojourner Truth, a 6 ft. tall speaker, was a voice for the abolitionist and women's right movement.  She died in Battle Creek, Michigan.  Michigan has honored her by having a 12 ft. high monument of her in Battle Creek, naming a Interstate after her, and putting her name in the Michigan Women's Hall of Fame.

Here's one of the activities that C. did. I copied the printable from Sailing through 1st grade and then I added the question headings to it.

K. worked diligently on this Sojourner Truth coloring sheet.

This is a wonderfully illustrated, well written book explaining the lives of both of these great women who finally got the chance to meet in October 1864.  

I created a worksheet with several facts from each of these women's lives. C. cut out each fact & read the book to find out which fact belonged to which woman. 

She then did a Venn Diagram of the two women using paper plates.
You can download the fact sheet & photos here.
May my children always have appreciation for the great history of people who look like them!


Stine said...

Well said! I am so blessed that God uses you to touch so many. Thanks for your transparency.
Love, Mom

Caryn said...

Thanks, Mom! That's so encouraging! ❤