Black History Hero of the Day: Dorothy Johnson Vaughan

2/9/2018 3:08 pm

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Black History Month Hero of the Day

Today, we feature Dorothy Johnson Vaughan. She was an African-American mathematics teacher
who became one of the leading mathematical engineers in early days of the aerospace industry. After the U.S. defense industry desegregated, Vaughan worked with leading computer operators and engineers, becoming a n expert in the FORTRAN programming coding language at NASA. She worked on the SCOUT Launch Vehicle Program that shot satellites into space. Vaughan and other female African- American mathematicians are the subject of a 2016 film Hidden Figures.

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Black History Month Hero of the Day: Jesse Owens

2/8/2018 3:36 pm

Black History Month Hero of the Day

Today, we feature Jesse Owens--a Buckeye! Jesse Owens, also known as "The Buckeye Bullet," was born on September 12, 1913, in Oakville, Alabama. In high school, he won three track and field events at the 1933 National Interscholastic Championships. Two years later, while competing for Ohio State University, he equaled one world record and broke three others. In 1936 Owens won four gold medals at the Olympic Games in Berlin.

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Representation Matters

2/7/2018 6:27 pm

Black History Hero of the Day

Keep an eye out for our featured Black/African American Hero of the Day! Today, we are featuring Madam CJ Walker, one of the first American women to become a self-made millionaire by creating specialized hair products. Please feel free to share others by sending information to, and we’ll be sure to add them to the rotation!


Representation Matters

As a parent of two multi-racial children (half Korean and half white (Scots-Irish-German)), I struggle to find protagonists of television, film, and books that look like my boys. Two current examples come to mind: the brothers in Big Hero 6 and the sisters in Andi Mack, both produced by Disney. It is easier to find more diverse representation within children’s and young adult literature. I am sure I am overlooking and am always open to hearing about other options. Why does seeing ourselves reflected in media, specifically positively portrayed, matter? Media representation helps broaden our horizons, introduces us to people and experiences outside of our own, and redefines what is normal, acceptable, and admired. This week, I challenge you to think of a specific race/culture or combination of races/cultures and, without browsing the web, think of FIVE mainstream media examples of when that race/culture was a positively portrayed protagonist. And, if you are interested in learning more or thinking more about the topic, please check out the following links:

By Lisa Harper Chang (mother to 2nd grade and Montessori explorers)


Please keep the conversation going with us by emailing


Lunar New Year

For millions of people in Asia and around the world, the Lunar New Year celebrations begin next Friday, February 16, 2018. Depending on the country, these celebrations can last anywhere from three days to two weeks and are family-centered celebrations filled with honoring ancestors and deities, firecrackers, gift-giving (red envelopes!), and an abundance of delicious food. To read more about the Lunar New Year with your explorer, check out the following titles:

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Talking to Your Kids About Race

2/2/2018 10:19 am

Conversations about race and inclusion can be awkward, difficult, and scary as a parent. The organization Embrace Race produces a blog, videos, and tip sheets to help parents navigate these conversations thoughtfully.If you find yourself struggling to address race and inclusion with your child or respond to them when they pose certain questions or say certain words, please check this resource out and definitely take a moment to read this tip sheet, available in both English and Spanish.


10 Tips for Talking to Your Child About Race

10 Tips for Talking to Your Child About Race (in Spanish)


In honor of Black History Month, we will be sharing African Americans and Black Americans who have contributed to the strength of this country. Stay tuned to learn more about some of our great American heroes!

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