My parents grew up during the 1960’s Civil Rights Movement, while living in the urban cities of Chicago and St. Louis. They often would tell amazing stories about their experiences integrating into white schools and neighborhoods. I was always so intrigued about the African American experience in America, accomplishments and contributions made toward building this great country. It was my parent’s stories that piqued my interest in history because those were things that I wasn’t learning in school.
My parents were avid readers of history and I would often read their history books. This increased my desire to share this knowledge with my peers and I often found myself organizing Black History presentations in school. It became a passion of my entire family to share Black History.
Unfortunately, I did encounter some people who didn’t want to learn our history. I can remember giving a presentation in my AP American history class about the importance of teaching history from a multicultural perspective. My teacher was adamantly opposed and thought history should only be taught by the dominant culture.
It was then that I knew I had to continue to champion the idea that all voices matter. I’m so excited that as a writer I have the opportunity to pass this ideology on to the next generation.
Ayanna is a debut author that enjoys writing fiction, historical fiction, non-fiction, and poetry for children. She finished her first manuscript in 2015 and is currently working with a literary agent to represent her work to Publishing houses.