A Black History Conference, And A Gut Check

Above: A screenshot from the opening of the Teaching Black History Conference


Friday I had the privilege of presenting a session called “Tech Tools and Grassroots” at the Teaching Black History Conference, put on by the Carter Center for K-12 Black History Education at the University of Missouri. I presented my work on The Black Experience in America: The Course, with a focus on how technology can amplify the reach and impact of learning beyond the classroom.

Like much of our interaction over the past year and a half, the conference took place over Zoom — and in a way, that was appropriate for my subject matter. Zoom is where I originally taught and tweaked The Course last summer, where I’ve fielded questions from college students and professors who are taking it now, and where I’ve built workshops to empower more teachers to bring it to their classrooms. This time I got to address a group of educators interested in improving the way Black history makes an impact on the learning audience.

My takeaway from the experience: We’re on the right track.

We’re at a rare moment when tech tools are making it affordable for educators to reach massive audiences not only with writing, downloads and video, but also with interactive environments and experiences. And when it comes to Black history, those independent resources are badly needed, since political pressures are having a fresh impact on what information is likely to be presented in mainstream textbooks.

The challenge now is to raise awareness of the resources, and equip educators to get the most out of them. With this growing community committed to exploring truth, I’m excited to figure it out.

You can take The Course online. Buy a lesson bundle, and send others the link: