Are You the One? | A Benjamin Banneker Sing-A-Long | Black History Month

In honor of Black History Month, Multicultural Kid Blogs is hosting a blog hop and they invited Sugarfoots to play along! They asked each participating blog to choose one person from African American History and write about their influence. Because Sugarfoots was born in Washington DC, I decided to write about Benjamin Banneker!

Are You the One?

When a child was born in to slavery, I imagine the mother holding her child close and observing every inch of this gift that she unsurely held in her arms. Perhaps she was wondering if the child would be taken from her or if she would be allowed to continue gazing at this life, gently whispering "Are you the one?"

I love celebrating Black History Month, as it reminds me of the greatness that has preceded me. It reminds me of starting with nothing and turning it into something. Living in Washington, DC, I often pause and reflect about Benjamin Banneker; I can’t stop wondering if his mother whispered those words to him, "Are you the one?" 

Benjamin Banneker

Like many of his time, Benjamin received very little education. What education he did receive, was quickly placed on the back burner when he reached adolescence. Instead, he was beckoned to work in the fields to help keep his family afloat. Even with those barriers, Benjamin Banneker’s passion managed to seep through the cracks. He discovered the unimaginable even though he was just a child born into poverty. He was so intrigued by a neighbor’s watch and asked to borrow it. He carefully took the watch apart and vigilantly sketched drawing of each part of that watch. Later on, he painstakingly carved each piece out of wood and built a clock that lasted over 50 years!

This self-taught wonder figured out astronomy and even created a very popular almanac. When Pierre Charles L’Enfant caught a royal attitude and walked off the job with all of his plans, Benjamin Banneker finished the surveying job completely from memory. He surveyed all of the boundaries of our nation’s capitol, thus creating the District of Columbia!

A Black History Sing-A-Long

During this celebrated month of February, there are many noted trailblazers to spotlight, way too many for one one blog post. I did, however, write a sing-along (sung to the tune of This Old Man) that highlights a few of my most favorite trailblazers.

Feel free to print it out and share it with your children, your schools and your libraries. This song is meant to give clues for children to research so that they may find out more of these great men and women’s accomplishments. You just might find yourself wondering did their mothers say, "Are you the one?"

(Sung to the tune of “This Old Man”)

By Barbara El Wilson©

1. Dr. King, he played one, (He said) now is the time for the rights to be won,

with a knick-knack-paddy-wack give a dog a bone,

Dr. King kept rolling home.

2. Rosa Parks, she played two, she knew just what she had to do,

with a knick-knack-paddy-wack give a dog a bone,

Rosa Parks kept rolling home.

3. Daniel Hale Williams he played three, he was successful at heart surgery,

with a knick-knack-paddy-wack give a dog a bone

Dr. Williams kept rolling home

4. Matthew Henson he played four, he was the first at the North Pole’s door,

with a knick-knack-paddy-wack give a dog a bone,

Matthew Henson kept rolling home.

5. Benjamin Banneker, he played five, he made D.C. come alive,

with a knick-knack-paddy-wack give a dog a bone,

Banneker kept rolling home.

6. Phillis Wheatley she played six, she wrote poems that were easy to speak,

with a knick-knack-paddy-wack give a dog a bone,

Phyllis Wheatley kept rolling home

7. Madame C. J. Walker she played seven, she made us look like angels from heaven,

with a knick-knack-paddy-wack give a dog a bone,

C. J. Walker kept rolling home.

8. Dr. Charles Drew he played eight, finding blood plasma was really great,

with a knick-knack-paddy-wack give a dog a bone,

Dr. Drew kept rolling home.

9. Jean Baptiste he played nine, he put Chicago in our minds,

with a knick-knack-paddy- wack give a dog a bone,

Jean Baptiste kept rolling home.

10. All of them, they played ten, they were great men and women,

with a knick-knack-paddy-wack give a dog a bone,

All of them are rolling-g-g-g-g-g-g-, home-e-e-e-e-e-e!!!!

Want to Learn More?

Join the discussion in our Google+ community, and follow our Black History board on Pinterest! Please visit the following blogs to learn a bit more about the leaders of the Civil Rights Movement worldwide.

Participating Blogs

Crafty Moms Share

Multicultural Kid Blogs

Africa to America

Discovering the World Through My Son's Eyes

Kid World Citizen

All Done Monkey