Category Archives: Child Development

Juneteenth—explaining it to your kids

Juneteenth is an American Celebration (a combination of the words June and Nineteenth).  Until recently, I’d wager to say that it hasn’t been very well-known to many, other than African Americans. Juneteenth (also known as Emancipation Day) is oldest established celebration of the end of slavery in the United States. The holiday originated on June 19, 1865, when the union troops arrived in Galveston Texas, bringing the news of the official end of the Civil War, this was actually two and a half years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation (official date of January 1, 1863). The delay in spreading this news of freedom was likely intentional and a representation of the attitude toward slaves in the south, thus an attempt to stop the spread of the good news. 

June 18, 1865

“The celebration was a time for mutual reassurance, praying and gathering with surviving family members to celebrate the coming freedom.” Taken from the official Juneteenth Website .

Over the years, the celebration has evolved into that similar to the July 4th Independence Day celebration, with outdoor activities such as barbecuing, but never losing focus on the central meaning of the celebration and what it means to the African American Community, through self-reflection, understanding the truths of the past and the realities of the present.

For our children, we should strive to teach them the significance and importance of this day.

Below are several good books for young readers on the subject. There are also good read-along videos available on YouTube!

Children

All Different Now: Juneteenth, the First Day of Freedom

By Angela Johnson

Freedom’s Gifts

By Valerie Wesley

Juneteenth for Mazie

By Floyd Cooper

Teens

Come Juneteenth

By Ann Rinaldi

Juneteenth

By Rachel Koestler-Grack

Juneteenth: A Celebration of Freedom

By Charles Taylor

Let’s Celebrate Emancipation Day & Juneteenth

By Barbara deRubertis

The Story of Juneteenth: An Interactive History Adventure

By Steven Otfinoski

YouTube Read-A-Longs:

Juneteenth by Bullfrog Books

Juneteenth For Maize

Strength Through Christ

phillippians413Needless to say, it’s been quite some time since I’ve posted regularly.  The other day, I ended my “hiatus” with a brand new post, remembering my father. Although I didn’t think of this on Mother’s Day, I feel it’s only appropriate to also reflect on my beautiful mom as well.  She was the rock of our family.  After Dad died, mom took the reins like a champ.  Continue reading Strength Through Christ

Father’s day good news and reflections . .

father blogIt’s been several years since dad passed away. Forty-five to be exact. I was 10 years old, yet the day is as vivid and fresh in my mind as ever. I won’t rehash every detail of that day or how it affected our lives growing up; but I will say, how very special it was to have my father for the short time he was with us, and how extremely grateful I am currently to have God in my life. He is the Father of all Fathers! Continue reading Father’s day good news and reflections . .