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Celebrating Black Leaders

  • Posted by Rhya Tamasauskas on February 18 2021

In North America, February is Black History Month, a time to celebrate and honor Black History. Today we are revisiting some of the extraordinary Black heroes we meet in Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum and highlighting their incredible accomplishments that helped change the world. 

To explore more materials for kids and parents on Black leaders, check out these great resources via PBS KIDS.

George Washington Carver

George Washington Carver was an agricultural scientist and inventor who studied plants. He worked to improve the lives of African American farmers in the South. George studied how farmers could plant different crops instead of the same crop over and over. This made the soil healthier so the cops could grow better. George wanted to take care of the Earth, and even though he was born more than 150 years ago, his lessons are just as important today.

In this clip, our friends from Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum, Brad, Xavier and Yadina travel back in time to meet George Washinton Carver, who shares with them some wise tips on how to take care of the earth.

You can learn even more about Carver on the PBS Learning Media site.

Rosa Parks

Rosa Parks was an American activist in the civil rights movement. And she was a very courageous woman, who never gave up until she got equality for all people. One of the things Rosa is best known for was her pivotal role in the Montgomery bus boycott. On December 1, 1955, Rosa Parks was arrested in Montgomery, Alabama, for refusing to give up her seat to a white man and move to the back on a municipal bus.

In this clip, the characters from Xavier Riddle are sent back in time to meet Rosa Parks. Xavier, Brad and Yadina witness firsthand how Rosa reacts to being treated unfairly, both as a young girl and as an adult, when she was asked to give up her seat on that municipal bus in 1955. A historic moment in time that helped ignite the birth of the modern American civil rights movement, all because of her courage to stand up for what's right!

Also, check out this video to learn more about how Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott changed history.

Zora Neale Hurston

Zora Neale Hurston was an American author and anthropologist who wrote stories based on her own experiences and struggles. She believed that every story was meant to be told, and brought people together.

Zora often told true events in her stories, highlighting her own experiences and what she saw happening around her. This led her to be one of the leading figures for the Harlem Renaissance, which helped Black writers and artists gain control over the representation of Black culture and experience.

Click here to learn more about Zora via the PBS Learning Media site.

Frederick Douglass

On September 3, 1838, Frederick Douglass began his escape from enslavement by boarding a train dressed as a sailor. He went on to be a social reformer, abolitionist and a leader in the fight for freedom.

In this clip, we travel back in time to meet the great Frederick Douglass himself, who teaches Xavier, Yadina and Brad that learning can take you anywhere!

Maya Angelou

Nobody knows the power of words better than the American poet, memoirist, singer and activist Maya Angelou! Xavier, Yadina and Brad learn from Maya that words are so powerful that they can sometimes cause hurt, and we should all focus on using our words to do good.

Read more about the incredible life of Maya Angelou here!

Harriet Tubman

There is no one better to teach us about courage than the amazing Harriet Tubman. Born into enslavement, Harriet escaped and went on 13 missions to rescue others. Although she was scared, her courage is what helped her to bravely move forward.

Learn more about Harriet's courage in the face of enormous risk.

Wilma Rudolph

Wilma Rudolph was the first African American woman to win three gold medals in a single Olympic games. She also was given the title of the fastest woman in the world in the 1960s. In this clip from Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum, watch as she races to a gold medal finish!

Thank you for joining us on this journey back through time highlighting some of history’s great Black heroes. And don’t forget if you are interested in exploring more materials for kids and parents on Black leaders check out these great resources via PBS KIDS.

Rhya Tamasauskas

Marketing Director, Social Media and Corporate Communications

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