Spot of color

I've been thinking about Black History Month since December, wondering if The Boy's class will have any lessons related to it. And I realized this year, I'm just not up to putting together a lesson plan in case the teacher hasn't already done so.
My kids are spots of color in a sea of whiteness sometimes, even if the kids don't yet comment on it. But they will. Which is why last year, I asked The Boy's kindergarten teacher if she'd like any lesson plan materials for Black History Month.

Courtesy Library of Congress
The kindergarten teacher hesitated because 'she didn't know much about American black history because she was raised in Canada.' But she did like the idea of a lesson centered around Ruby Bridges, the six-year-old who integrated a New Orleans school in 1960. I reserved two copies from the local library for her, and brought one to class. Just in case, I brought other story options for the teacher too.

(I also looked up links to Canadian black history. Just in case she was curious.)

At home, I've tried to plant some seeds in The Boy and TwoBoo's brains before they get to school.
As far as I know -- and I could be really, really wrong -- no one's excluded or bullied The Boy because of his racial heritage. But The Husband and I've crossed our fingers and waded into the big Racism Talks with The Boy a few months ago. He needs to be ready for the (willfully ignorant) people who try to provoke him, even though he has lots of friends of varying backgrounds and (sometimes lack of) hue.
Although 3.1% of people in Extra-Blue State describe themselves as being of two or more races, nearly 83% describe themselves as white. Some of those people can't tell you why Michelle Bachmann's version of American history is mind-splittingly wrong. They don't know why kids should know Huck Finn repeatedly called his best friend the N-word. This is a time when "some of my best friends are black" has turned into hipster racism. We've tried to emphasize how we wish we didn't have to tell The Boy about this -- but that it was better for him to know before someone tried to surprise and hurt him with it later.

I'm already worried about whether The Boy is mature enough to handle being a first-grader. I don't have the energy to counter black history being served up as a Very Special Episode of American history.

Maybe next year.