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Children’s Book About Marcus Garvey: ‘Marcus Teaches Us’

By Eleanor Wint

Years ago, an artist, Ireko Baker and I got together to write a children’s book. We called it Marcus Teaches Us because we wanted children to learn about this great philosopher, Marcus Garvey.

Garvey was a very serious man and children tended to think of him as someone that only adults could understand. But Garvey’s teachings are for all ages and all people. So we wrote our book but it had very little exposure.

Today I have a new illustrator, because I am living in Canada and Baker is having problems with his eyes. My new illustrator is Luk Poduch, a young graphic arts student from Poland who sees this as the most important thing he has ever done.

We developed a new look for the book and we are trying to make it more international and appealing to everyone.

I wrote this book because Garvey is one of the world’s greatest philosophers. He accomplished in a short time what many others have dreamed about. He influenced every black nation on the road to independence.

He was misunderstood in his call for self-reliance and race pride. He taught that every race has the right to know their own history and has the responsibility to be proud about it.

Children need to have self-confidence and high, positive self-esteem when they are in the preschool years (3 to 6 ) as this is the strength that they will never lose.

Research has shown that children who have positive self-esteem at this age tend not to be involved in deviant and antisocial behavior. There is so much happening in the children’s environment today that we have the responsibility to do whatever we can to strengthen their feelings about themselves, their history and their culture to help them fight against negative racial stereotypes.

The font of the book is cursive style, so children don’t forget the message in the new age of keyboards. The pictures encourage coloring and knowledge-building as we have included black international heroes.

One page is a reproduction of a silk screen that Jamaican children developed at a summer camp.

The aim is for the children to see this book as their own and one that they will keep learning from.

If you go to our Facebook page and our landing page you can download a free eBook that documents the achievements of famous blacks over the years. It’s called “More than Black-eyed Peas: Blacks exhibiting Excellence.”

Source: Eleanor Wint

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