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Leticia Franqui-Rosario

was born Wilfred Robert Adams, in Georgetown, British Guiana (now Guyana), the son of Robert Adams, a boat builder. He was educated in Georgetown at St. Stephen’s Scots School, and St. Joseph’s Intermediate. He studied engineering drafting, but then trained as a teacher at the leading British West Indian teachers’ training college, Mico College in Jamaica. After his marriage broke down, he left for England, arriving there in September 1930. Failing to study law because of a lack of the necessary qualifications, he did a number of menial jobs and even became a professional wrestler with the name “The Black Eagle” (there is a 1934 painting by William Roberts of one of his bouts).

Acting then took over. His stage debut, with Paul Robeson in Stevedore, received favorable reviews. A year later he played Jean-Jacques Dessalines to Robeson’s Toussaint Louverture in C. L. R. James’s Toussaint Louverture ...

Article

Danielle Legros Georges

was born Marie-Thérèse Colimon on 11 April 1918, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, to Ana Bayard and Joseph Colimon. Her parents were a middle-class couple who encouraged the intellectual development of their eight children. An avid reader as a child, Colimon-Hall completed primary and secondary school in Port-au-Prince, and at age 14 she entered Haiti’s École Normale d’Institutrices (Teacher’s College). She began her teaching career as a very young woman, and took part in Port-au-Prince’s cultural and literary events, publishing poems under the pseudonym Marie Bec. She later traveled to Europe, with a period of study at France’s Centre de Formation Pédagogique in support of a growing interest in preschool education. She would marry Louis Hall, a poet and educator, later in life.

Among the first to develop training programs in Haiti for early childhood education Colimon Hall began her work in the context of an educational reform movement that followed ...

Article

Stephen Preskill

Lucy Ellen Moten was born in Fauquier County, Virginia, near White Sulphur Springs, the daughter of Benjamin Moten, a U.S. Patent Office clerk, and Julia Withers. Taking advantage of their status as free blacks, the Motens moved to the District of Columbia when Lucy was only a child to secure the best possible education for their precocious daughter. Lucy attended Washington's pay schools until 1862, when she was admitted to the district's first public schools for African Americans. After attending the preparatory and normal departments of Howard University, Lucy Moten began teaching in the primary grades of the local public schools and taught there continuously, except for a two-year interruption, from 1870 until 1883. In 1873 Moten moved to Salem, Massachusetts, to attend the State Normal School, from which she graduated in 1875.

In 1883Frederick Douglass recommended that Moten be appointed to ...

Article

Charles Rosenberg

school teacher and domestic worker, is best known for a poignant and detailed autobiography that provides a window into daily life for the Americans who were stigmatized legally and socially, during the middle of the twentieth century, by their dark complexion.

Sarah Lucille Webb was born in Clio, Alabama, to Elizabeth (Lizzie) Janet Lewis Webb, a schoolteacher, and Willis James Webb, a minister of the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) church. In her early years she moved with her parents to Troy, Andalusia, Birmingham, Batesville, and Eufala, Alabama. As an itinerant minister ordained by a Methodist church, Reverend Webb was subject to reassignment to a new church at any annual conference, and every one to two years he had to move. The family supplemented his minister's salary by sharecropping cotton and corn and grew field peas, greens, and vegetables for their own use or for sale.

The family ...