Help learners celebrate Black history with these videos, lessons, podcasts, and more.

Student in a museum of African American history

The inclusion of Black history and culture is essential for an accurate and true representation of American (and world) history overall. Black History Month is a time to highlight the people who have not only created foundational innovations, art, and achievements, but also organized and protested for equal rights and freedoms.

Of course, the civil rights movement and figures like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Harriet Tubman, and Rosa Parks are integral pieces of this history. But there are lesser-known -- and incredibly impactful -- people and contributions that illustrate an even greater breadth and depth of Black history and culture.

Below you'll find resources -- including videos, texts, lessons, podcasts, and more -- about activists, art and culture, inventors, engineers, historical events, and beyond. And to extend your search even further, don't miss the list of broader collections found at the bottom of this article. Every resource we've curated here has a suggested grade band, but many are flexible and adaptable to just about any age group. Consider the possibilities for how you might integrate these resources into your instruction (or use them at home!) during Black History Month or any time of the year.


A reminder for teachers: Navigate stories and images of oppression and violence with care. Black history is a complicated mix of both triumph and tribulations. While Black history doesn't begin or end with slavery or the injustices of racism, these harsh realities are part of it. Keep in mind your students' abilities when it comes to processing what they're reading, seeing, and listening to, and be aware that triggering topics can sometimes be more traumatic for Black and Brown kids

Essential Sites and Curricula for All Ages


Activities and Resources for Preschool to Third Grade


Audio and Stories for Preschool to Third Grade

  • Listen along as James Earl Jones reads "To Be a Drum," a story of rhythm, history, and freedom.
  • Enjoy the African Folktales With Miss Jo Jo podcast to hear stories that originated in Africa and were passed down through generations.

Videos for Preschool to Third Grade

Hands-On Activities for Preschool to Third Grade

Activities and Resources for Third to Fifth Grade


Audio and Stories for Third Grade to Fifth Grade

  • Listen to this episode from The Past and the Curious podcast about blues and folk musician Elizabeth Cotten, whose catchy songs traveled all over the world and even influenced the Beatles.
  • Journey into the world of Latin American music with this podcast episode (via YouTube) from Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls and learn about the life of Celia Cruz, the Cuban Afro-Latina singer known as the Queen of Salsa.
  • Hey Black Child: The Podcast features lesser-known African American Heroes and is hosted by kids!

Videos for Third Grade to Fifth Grade

Hands-On Activities for Third Grade to Fifth Grade

Text-Based Activities for Third Grade to Fifth Grade

Activities and Resources for Sixth to Eighth Grade


Audio and Stories for Sixth Grade to Eighth Grade

Videos for Sixth Grade to Eighth Grade

Hands-On Activities for Sixth Grade to Eighth Grade

  • Visit this online exhibition from the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History to read about Frederick Douglass and see images of some of his handwritten documents.
  • Learn more about the history behind trap music, a ubiquitous, influential music genre, in this lesson from PBS LearningMedia.
  • Watch this video from Flocabulary to examine Langston Hughes' most famous poem and his use of figurative language. Then have students write their own "Harlem"-inspired poem.
  • Read one of the many thought-provoking stories on the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) website, and then dig into the associated collections of artifacts.

Text-Based Activities for Sixth Grade to Eighth Grade

Activities and Resources for Ninth to Twelfth Grade


Audio and Stories for Ninth to Twelfth Grade

Videos for Ninth to Twelfth Grade

Hands-On Activities for Ninth to Twelfth Grade

Text-Based Activities for Ninth to Twelfth Grade


Christine Elgersma

Christine Elgersma is Senior Editor, Learning Content, Strategy which means she manages the newsletter about learning, edits writing about learning, and loves to learn. Before coming to Common Sense, she helped create ELA curriculum for a K-12 app and taught the youth of America as a high school teacher, a community college teacher, a tutor, and a special education instructional aide for about 18 years. Christine is also a writer, primarily of fiction and essays, and loves to read all manner of books. When she's not putting on a spontaneous vaudeville show with her daughter, Christine loves nature, music, and almost any form of dark chocolate.