UB to host international conference on teaching Black history – UBNow: News and views for UB faculty and staff


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Educators, parents, librarians and museum curators are invited to attend the 5th Annual Teaching Black History Conference at UB.

Organized by the UB Center for K–12 Black History and Racial Literacy Education, the conference will bring together hundreds of people from around the world to learn curricular and instructional practices surrounding Black history education. This year’s theme is Mother Africa.

The event, scheduled July 22-24, will be held at City Honors School, 186 E. North St., Buffalo. Participants may attend in-person or virtually, and are eligible to receive up to 20 professional development credits. Guests may register on the conference website.  

“I am excited to welcome hundreds of people to the 5th Teaching Black History Conference — the first in Buffalo, New York,” says LaGarrett King, director of the UB Center for K–12 Black History and Racial Literacy Education and associate professor of social studies education, Graduate School of Education.

“The charge for this conference is to teach what Dr. Nwando Achebe has called ‘Another Africa,’ where our presenters will guide us away from the usual state standards and history textbooks that do not show Africa in her fullness. Instead, we will provide nuance to Africa’s history.”

Founded by King, a renowned scholar of Black history education, the UB Center for K–12 Black History and Racial Literacy Education seeks to investigate and provide solutions for more effective education around Black history and race.

The center’s signature event, the Annual Teaching Black History Conference, will include more than 50 interactive workshops for professionals who educate at any level, from elementary school to higher education. Topics range from using comics to drive difficult conversations about race and history to sessions on how to incorporate African-inspired art, music and literature into curriculums and lessons on the history of African kingdoms and countries. 

The conference will feature three keynote sessions:

  • July 22: “Exploring Global Black History through the Archives” by Joy Bivins, director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in the New York Public Library.
  • July 23: “Nneka-Mother is Supreme: Women, Gender, and the Female Principle in Africa” by Nwando Achebe, Jack and Margaret Sweet Endowed Professor of History at Michigan State University.
  • July 24: “Back to Africa: A conversation with Drs. Diaspora” by Gloria Boutte, associate dean for diversity, equity and inclusion, and Carolina Distinguished Professor at the University of South Carolina College of Education, and George Johnson Jr., professor at South Carolina State University.


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