Black History Month inspired activities and recipes

Updated: Nov 19, 2021



Looking to celebrate Black History Month with your little one? Check this out!


Please note these are inspired by a resource from islingtoncs.org for more information click here.

Arts and Crafts


· Use books, pictures and artefacts for inspiration for activities such as mask making, jewellery, clay work, sculpture and fabric printing!


· Your little one can paint a self-portrait (make sure they have the right colours to make skin tones).


· Make art based on artists from African-Caribbean heritage.

Stories and storytelling


· Books and stories are a very powerful way of representing the world for young children, allowing them to explore different aspects of people’s lives. We’ve curated a list of books by black authors and illustrators for inspiration - click here to read.


· You can use a particular story to create a new activity! For instance, crafting objects seen in the story or making artwork from the illustrations.

Music and dance


· Use streaming services or speak other parents to learn about different styles of African-Caribbean music and allow your little one space to dance.


You can also use this as an opportunity to learn about instruments!


Curious play


· Have a look online for cultural items and print off photos – these can be a great learning tool when looking at cultures.


· Display a world map and pinpoint some different places in it – learn about the countries and their cultures with your little one!

Get cooking!


Here are some recipe ideas from Africa and the Caribbean you can make with your little one!


From the Caribbean


· Johnny Cakes

Ingredients

80z self raising flour 2oz sugar a little salt water

oil or fat


What to do

Put the flour into a bowl adding the salt. Mix well then add the water, a little bit at a time until it is all mixes in. Pour in the sugar and mix well. Put oil in a frying pan and heat. Get a piece of the dough and roll it in your hand, flatten it out but not too flat. Put it in the frying pan and let it brown. Repeat until all the dough is finished. Eat on their own or with a main course.


· Cornmeal pone


Ingredients

150g cornmeal 50g plain flour 1 cup of grated coconut

50g raisins 1 cup of water 150g brown sugar 1⁄2 teaspoons mixed spice 1⁄2 teaspoons grated nutmeg

25g margarine a pinch of salt


What to do

Toss the raisins in some flour and keep aside. Put the cornmeal, sugar, salt and spices into a large bowl with the grated coconut. Gradually add water to dry ingredients and mix in. Leave the mixture aside for 15 minutes. Add the raisins and mix. Pour the mixture into a deep greased baking tray. Dot the surface with small pieces of butter. Bake for about an hour at 350o F/ Gas Mark 4 until the mixture is set and firm to touch. Turn the oven up for the last 5 minutes to brown the surface. Allow to cool a little and then cut into small slices. Can be kept in an airtight tin.


Recipes from Africa

· Akla: Blackeye bean fries (West Africa)


Ingredients

225g dried blackeye beans 110g onions, peeled and chopped 1 tablespoon of scraped and chopped ginger

2 tablespoons of hot water 1 teaspoon of chilli powder salt and pepper vegetable oil for frying


What to do

Soak the beans in double their volume of hot water for about 30 minutes then drain off the water. Using both hands, squeeze and gently rub the beans so that the skins slide off. Cover the beans with water again and let the skins float away. Drain the beans and pound (or use and electric blender) with the rest of the ingredients until you have a smooth puree. Heat the oil in a saucepan. Scoop up a teaspoon of the bean puree and drop it into the hot oil. Fry, turning frequently for about 5 minutes until golden brown. Drain in kitchen paper. Serve hot or cold. These freeze well.


· H’mbasha - spiced bread (Ethiopia)


Ingredients

300ml warm water 25g fresh yeast 1 egg

1 teaspoon ground fenugreek 1 teaspoon ground coriander 1⁄2 teaspoon ground black cardamom 1⁄2 teaspoon of salt 500g flour (you can mix white and wholemeal)


What to do

Dissolve the yeast in the warm water. Add the spices and the egg. Mix well. Add the flour to the mixture a little at a time. Mix and knead for about 10 minutes. Cover and keep the dough in a warm place, allow to rise until almost double in size. Divide into 4 pieces and using your hand, flatten each piece lightly into a round flat loaf. Decorate the loaf with ‘stripes’ using a fork or knife. Place in a heavy heated frying pan. Cover and cook for about 7 minutes. Remove from the pan, brush with warm water or butter and cover with a clean tea towel. Cook the remaining loaves in the same way. Serve hot or cold.