African-Americans come from a long, culturally rich heritage, that includes a mixture of many diverse cultures and nations. Six-year-old Vanae James-Bey and her mother Veronica, have made it their mission to help educate young people about black indigenous cultures around the world.
In their colorful 20-page coloring book, entitled, The Indigenous Adventures of Princess Vanae, not only do the pair educate the masses about black indigenous cultures around the world, they, at the same time, explore the histories of native-born black people from Africa and America.
"Culture is very important to our family," Vanae's mom commented in a recent interview. "[As well as] knowing about our indigenous roots. Being home-schooled, we tend to stick to a more Afrocentric curriculum and noticed how hard it was to find specific materials for lessons and how many other parents [and] students must feel the same. Vanae was naturally curious about history as she is exposed to tons of documentaries, and both myself and her father are avid readers; she's always around books."
In order to offer an educational tool to children so that they could see black history from a totally unique perspective, the Bey's enlisted the help of Vanae's uncle, Johnathan Ellerbee, who drew pictures of Vanae wearing indigenous jewelry and clothing based on her various lessons.
"We plan on making more volumes because we couldn't fit all cultures into one," Bey said. "Fiction books [are also on the way]. Wherever black people are in the word as a distinct culture, we plan to explore them all."
We cannot wait to see what Vanae and her mother come up with next. This is definitely a unique way to teach history, going beyond the traditional focus, helping children and adults learn that black history can be found across the globe.
To learn more about The Indigenous Adventures of Princess Vanae, visit their website here.
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