Sep. 10, 2019

WWCGWT? Reading Beyond The Classrooms

One year ago today my cousin a future attorney and a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University placed this post on his Facebook Page:

"Pick up a book, cut back 30 minutes a day from social media or television and read something. There is a wealth of knowledge available to us. Discover something new."

Bryce Johnson

I think Brother Johnson's message should be sent to every person who resides in our communities across this nation. Now more than ever it is vitally important for the younger people in our communities to recognize the importance of acquiring knowledge beyond the classrooms that they occupy daily. The fact of the matter is that our educational institutions cannot be the only avenue of learning that our children experience. Our children also cannot be overly dependent on the entertainment industry to awaken their consciousness. It is most imperative that our children accept a degree of personal responsibility to acquire the knowledge essential to being competitive in today's technology-enriched society.

Learning beyond the STEM classrooms requires a deep understanding of the rich history of their elders, ancestors and experiences that have paved the way for them today, and tomorrow. Yesterday my two posts celebrated the founding of Carter Goodwin Woodson organization the Association for the Study of Afro American Life and History which was founded in Chicago, Illinois on September 9, 1915. Today, I would like to reflect on this thought, are we too dependent on our educational institutions to do the work necessary to enhance our children's knowledge of community and self? Are we providing the needed motivation to our children to see that they take every opportunity to learn about their own historical stories? No one can truly tell the stories of our ancestors better than we can? Do we actually think that the knowledge learned in the classrooms is the final word to our children's learning experiences?

That is the reason why the issue of promoting literacy every day is a vital outreach to the transference of knowledge in our homes, churches, community centers, and learning centers beyond the traditional classrooms. What Brother Johnson was referring to in his post was simply a beautiful thought. Take 30 minutes, just 30 minutes per day, or 3 and 1/2 hours per week, or 15 hours per month, or 180 hours per year to completely change the fabric of learning in our communities across this nation. If you did that as a parent in a read-aloud setting you could essentially pave the way for your children's success for a lifetime. If you taught your children this literacy methodology beyond the traditional classroom. It would be transferred to generations of our children in our communities many tomorrows.

The question many in our community's religious institutions ask on Sundays is what you Jesus think? The question I ask today in my continued celebration of the great life works of one Carter Goodwin Woodson ask is what would the spirit of Dr. Woodson think? Could we truly erase the miseducation of the Negro or the Afro American? Just another thought from The Blackman Read Aloud Project for September 10, 2019.