Month: February 2021

Black History Month IS American History

Not gonna get super political around here, but I frequently see comments like “Why do we celebrate Black History Month and not Japanese or (insert country here) month? Doesn’t this stuff divide our country even more?”

It’s not something I’m proud of, but I used to be one of them.

First of all, May is Asian/Pacific Heritage Month. Irish-American Heritage is in March. So false premise already, but let’s continue.

Start by asking, “Why don’t we have Ethiopian History Month or Congo History month, or celebrate holidays and events from African cultures? People from those countries helped build America as much (if not more) as any other.”

Because the Black/African peoples were stripped of their national heritage, identity, culture, and traditions, even their humanity, when they arrived. We (meaning American slavers and slave owners) took everything from them. When they were freed, they had nothing, we gave them nothing back. No families, no culture or community to gain strength and fellowship from. They could only belong to one group, based on the one thing that slavery’s couldn’t take away, and was even the thing we used to define and denigrate them, their skin color.

We can’t just say “Be Americans, isn’t that enough?” No, it’s not. This country was built on and with people and cultures from all over the world. Except African. Except Black people.

Black History Month is part of an effort to give that culture and history and belonging back. Their holidays and accomplishments and culture deserve to be celebrated and incorporated into our own American culture just as much as everyone else’s, probably more because so much was taken from them. If you don’t want other cultures celebrated, don’t recognize St. Patrick’s Day, or Halloween, or Cinco de Mayo, do anything that recognizes Japanese or Chinese New Year, anything that involved Fireworks, or any other events that came to us from other cultures. If you do celebrate those and continue to complain about recognizing Black Culture, then you need to take a look inward and figure out why. Spend some time learning about Black history, join in the celebrations, and try and move yourself closer to the people who had everything taken from them, not make them move toward you.

We cut them out in the past. Unless we make black culture and history as much a part of America as everyone else’s, they will continue to be separated. Black culture is already in America, it’s up to us to educate ourselves about it. If we don’t, we (white people) are the ones creating separation and division by not being educated about our countries past. Slavery isn’t our fault, but it is our responsibility.

Thank you for making it though this. Typed on mobile, so please forgive any typos.

Change starts with me. I am ignorant in a lot of areas. It’s something I can improve on. I WILL improve on.

Bringing everyone to the table.

For families with a mixture of motor and communications abilities, the classic tradition of gathering around a table and playing games can be difficult. Here are some games that are fun for everyone and accessible across a wide range of abilities.

ThinkFun Roll & Play: 

    This game is designed to encourage creativity, active play and gross motor skills. Roll the large soft cube, and perform the activity that’s on the card with the matching color. A great opportunity to all be silly together! You can even create your own actions, just make your own cards! 

https://www.thinkfun.com/products/roll-play/

Bananagrams: 

    Practice spelling without having to hold a writing utensil. It’s like Scrabble, but with fewer rules! Plus, it comes in a fun zip up banana bag, so bonus!

https://bananagrams.com/products/bananagrams

You can also find a braille version of bananagrams and other games and game pieces at MaxiAids.com
https://www.maxiaids.com/board-games

Trouble: Dice games can be difficult for folks with limited fine motor skills. Trouble solves this by having the dice inside a dome that you push down. It pops us and rolls the dice for you! Also, no losing the dice! Hooray!

Rory’s Story Cubes: 

    These little cubes help introduce kids to storytelling without the hurdle of pen and paper. Roll the dice, and create a story around what comes up! Fun for adults also!

https://www.storycubes.com/en/

Jenga: 

While this classic game is known and loved around the world, it can be hard to grab and manipulate those little blocks! Fortunately there are sets with larger blocks, which are much easier to get a hold of.

https://www.amazon.com/Jenga-Giant-Family-Hardwood-Stack/dp/B017J3G46O

Hopefully this list helps bring everyone to the table for some fun!


For a master list of games and their grades on different accessibility scales, check out Meeple Like Us.https://www.meeplelikeus.co.uk/meeple-like-us-masterlist/