story by Claire Miller
In 1990, Joyce King edited a special issue of the Journal of Education on teaching practices that support Black children’s well-being, and how having a more in-depth knowledge of African cultural heritage can benefit all teachers and students.
“My article in that journal asked, ‘What if educators really loved Black children?’” said King, the College of Education & Human Development’s Benjamin E. Mays Endowed Chair for Urban Teaching, Learning and Leadership. “My scholarship and that of others has been concerned about teaching and learning that embraces African American cultural identity and heritage positively and truthfully,” she said.
Her newest book, “We Be Lovin’ Black Children: Learning to Be Literate About the African Diaspora,” nods to her 1990 Journal of Education article and shares what she and other researchers have learned since then about preparing teachers for diverse classrooms and celebrating African Diaspora literacy and heritage knowledge.
She and her co-editors – University of South Carolina Distinguished Professor Gloria Swindler Boutte, South Carolina State University Professor George Lee Johnson Jr. and University of Missouri Associate Professor LaGarrett J. King – created a book with activities that schools, families and communities can do together to better understand and value the African Diaspora’s history, literature, language and culture.
Several teacher educators in the U.S., Africa and the Caribbean contributed chapters that detail their research and experiences with Black students’ cultural and academic excellence. As a result, the book can be used as a resource for educators to confront anti-Black and anti-African attitudes that still pervade schools today.
“Learning to be literate about the African Diaspora is not just for Black educators,” King said. “Teacher preparation is often inadequate regarding what we can and must do to ensure that Black children worldwide can flourish. This book fills that gap.”
To learn more about her book, visit https://myersedpress.presswarehouse.com/browse/book/9781975504632/We-Be-Lovin-Black-Children.