PHOTO: Children at a Freedom School, an iteration of self-determined Black African education that popped up in the 1960s and 70s (Courtesy Photo)
In a system that attacks Black African people from all angles, it’s imperative that education becomes wholistic and reflective of Our situation in the Babylon system. Otherwise, Our children, the custodians of Our future, don’t stand a chance in advancing Our interests in an increasingly diverse, but white-centered society.
Under the guise of multiculturalism and globalism, countless Black African children in the public school system don’t receive education that affirms their Black African identity, and reveals the truth of their current situation. Instead, they’re relegated to instruction that focuses on memorization of facts and the facade of mastery via standardized testing. At the end of their academic careers, students, particularly those without additional instruction, become more like cogs in a machine than free-thinking individuals.
Our children must be able to enter career fields essential to the Black African nation’s self-determination — whether it be political, economic, industrial, or social. More importantly, the elders in our community must be prepared to teach Black African youth the tricks of their trade from an African-centered perspective.
The small group that attended the October 19 edition of The AllEyesOnDC Show, themed “The Keys to Revolutionary Education” entered the presentation as professionals learning to articulate the specifics of their jobs, so that young people can see how raw skills taught in school apply in those career fields.
Making that connection requires the formation of a career-focused curriculum that guides along a path to mastery of a trade, through which students can apply subject-matter concepts in tasks.
During the nearly two-hour presentation, half of which can be seen in the video on this page, AllEyesOnDC host and founder Sam P.K. Collins outlined what he described as “The Pathway to an Active Classroom.” That pathway includes:
- The formation of an environment with photos of Black African figures, African-centered language, and Black African source material for instruction
- Questions that force students to think critically and express their thoughts verbally
- The teacher’s reflection on what they love about their job, and the parts of the job that students will need to know
- Construction of a lesson plan that exposes students to Black African mavens of that industry, shows them the raw skills involved, and demands that they apply them in in exercises similar to what professionals in that specific industry would do.
The AllEyesOnDC Writing Workshop, an experience culminating in the completion of a short story about conflict and character development, serves as a tangible representation of the curriculum development process. Students enrolled in this six-session course are immersed in an African-centered environment that exposes them to Black African writers and speakers. More importantly, they learn and apply the writing process, learning aspects of grammar and idea formation along the way.
Hopefully, professionals of various industries can find inspiration in this model and set out on teaching youth the machinations of their job. Peace and blessings!