The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture has launched a new online portal designed to help individuals, families, and communities talk about racism, racial identity and the way these forces shape every aspect of society.
The Talking About Race portal provides digital activities and tools, video instructions, scholarly articles and more than 100 multimedia resources tailored for educators, parents and caregivers, and individuals committed to racial equality.
The Museum, which is devoted exclusively to exploring, documenting and showcasing the African American story and its impact on American and world history, aims to help individuals and communities foster constructive discussions on one of the nation’s most challenging topics: racism, and its corrosive impact.
“Since opening the museum, the number one question we are asked is how to talk about race, especially with children,” said Spencer Crew, the interim director of the National Museum of African American History and Culture. “We recognize how difficult it is to start that conversation. But in a nation still struggling with the legacies of slavery, Jim Crow laws, and white supremacy, we must have these tough conversations if we have any hope of turning the page and healing. This new portal is a step in that direction.”
Research shows that many people feel they do not have the information needed to discuss race in a way that is candid, safe and respectful of other viewpoints and experiences.
“The portal offers a wealth of resources to inform and guide discussions—videos, role-playing exercises, targeted questions and more, said Crew.” “We hope that people will use this site to become more comfortable about engaging in honest dialogue and self-reflection.”
Talking About Race builds upon decades of work by the museum’s educators. It is the result of extensive research, studies, consultations, and educational resources from these fields: history, education, psychology and human development. It includes published research from leading experts, activists, historians, and thought leaders on race, equity, and inclusion.
Explore Talking About Race at nmaahc.si.edu/learn/talking-about-race. The portal is free and does not require a registration or sign-up to use. You can also follow along with @NMAAHC on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
Museum building photo: Alan Karchmer
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