National Black Child Development Week: May 14-20, 2017

National Black Child Development Week (NBCDW) raises community awareness about important issues impacting Black children and families. The 2017 theme, “Being Black Is Not a Risk Factor” will educate, empower, organize, and mobilize us to reclaim and reframe the predominant narrative about Black communities by highlighting the inherent strengths, assets, and resilience demonstrated by Black children and families.



Saturday, May 20: Being Black Is...


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To culminate this year’s National Black Child Development Week, our National Affiliate Network will engage communities in defining what it means to be Black by hosting a “Being Black Is…” event. During the event, Affiliates will host family activities and offer community resources to children and families in their local communities. Affiliates will post and tag NBCDI in event photos, including “Being Black Is…” fill-in-the-blank boards, on Facebook and Twitter using our hashtag, #NBCDW2017.



Friday, May 19: We Read to Succeed


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Encourage parents, caregivers, teachers, and students to pledge to read their favorite children's book to promote early language and literacy development while fostering a lifelong love of reading. Post photos of the day’s activities using hashtag #NBCDW2017 on Facebook and Twitter.



Thursday, May 18: Our Children are Leaders, Entrepreneurs, and Creators


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Celebrate the brilliance of Black children by honoring young trailblazers featured by NBCDI on our Facebook and Twitter pages throughout the day. These children are artists, musicians, designers, scientists, nonprofit leaders, business owners, and vanguards in their own right.



Wednesday, May 17:

Parent Power BootCamp


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Join NBCDI and Center for American Progress for a National Call to Action addressing the issue of disproportionate suspensions and expulsions of Black children. Participate in the conversation 4:30 - 5:30 PM (EST) by calling (712) 451-0011. The access code is 169738.

In response to the urgency created by recently proposed policies and their implications for Black children and families, the National Black Child Development Institute's (NBCDI) Annual Parent Power BootCamp will shift its focus to address preschool suspensions and expulsions.

NBCDI's Action Agenda issues a challenge to "early learning systems to eliminate preschool suspensions and expulsions in early childhood education and provide appropriate support for teachers responding to the needs of children." The change in this year's BootCamp will enhance our coordinated response to the egregious, yet pervasive, issue of preschool suspensions that impacts Black children at a disproportionate rate. Most recently, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) proposed to omit a question regarding whether a child between the ages of 0-5 was subjected to preschool suspension/expulsion on the 2017 National Survey of Children's Health.

NBCDI will use the momentum from our response to the HHS issue this past week to amplify the suspension and expulsion crisis in our communities during National Black Child Development Week: May 14-20, 2017.

Download NBCDI's Parent Power BootCamp Call to Action Toolkit here.



Tuesday, May 16: Our Families and Communities Are Our Strength


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Check out NBCDI's curated list of articles that highlight best practices and initiatives that are making a difference for Black children, families, and communities.

  1. Sarasota Community Studio
  2. Overtown Youth Center
  3. Children's Services Council of Palm Beach County
  4. Smart From the Start, Inc.
  5. Northside Achievement Zone
  6. Figuring It Out for the Child: Shifting Conceptions of Roles, Expectations, and Accountability in Unmarried Parents by Christopher A. Warren, Ph.D. (Being Black Is Not a Risk Factor: Statistics and Strengths-Based Solutions in the State of Florida, Page 66)
  7. Improving Family Engagement and Advocacy by Design: A Human-Centered Approach by Kiesha Moodie, M.Ed. (Being Black Is Not a Risk Factor: Statistics and Strengths-Based Solutions in the State of Florida, Page 50)



Monday, May 15: We are Brilliant from Birth


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Host or join five-minute brain building breaks developed by NBCDI and Vroom at your local early care and education center or program. These breaks are designed to turn everyday activities, such as mealtime and bath time, into brain building moments.



Sunday, May 14: Mother's Day

Post photos of the Black women who nurture, support, and inspire you using hashtags #BlackMomsRock, #BlackMommyMagic, and #BlackBombMoms on Facebook and Twitter. Share NBCDI’s social media graphics highlighting strengths-based data points about Black mothers and feature developmentally-appropriate Mother’s Day activities for children on our Facebook and Twitter page.

Mother's Day Brunch: "Breakfast in Bed"

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Mother’s Day is a great occasion for cooking together with your children. Not only does cooking together provide time to bond as a family, it also gives children the opportunity to practice other important skills, like measuring ingredients (mathematics) and reading recipes (literacy). Try this fun recipe with your child to prepare a tasty breakfast in bed or add it to your Mother’s Day Brunch menu.

  • Assign your child to oversee the mise en place. Mise en place is a French cooking phrase that means “putting in place.” It means that all the ingredients are measured and in place before preparing the dish.
  • Ask your child to find and prepare all the cooking utensils and ingredients for the recipe by finding them, measuring them, and setting them to the side before you begin cooking.


  • Aids in social emotional growth by engaging in a relationship building activity.
  • Helps practice basic math skills by using measurement.
  • Promotes literacy progression by introducing a letter of the day that represents a healthy food.

Baked Nectarines with Honey-Lemon Yogurt

    Nectarines are part of the peach family. Unlike peaches, nectarines have a smooth shiny skin. A good-quality nectarine will be fairly large; have smooth, unblemished skin; and will be firm but not rock-hard.

    These hot baked nectarines with sweet lemon whip make for a delicious pie-like dessert! Adding fresh lemon juice and a little honey or maple syrup to the yogurt makes it a great treat for kids.

    • MAKES: 8 servings, 4 slices each
    • PREP TIME: 5 minutes
    • COOK TIME: 15 minutes
    • NUTRITIONAL ANALYSIS: Calories: 59, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 0g, Cholesterol: 2mg; Sodium: 22mg, Carbohydrate: 12g, Fiber: 1g, Sugars: 10g, Protein: 2g


    • 4 nectarines, white or yellow flesh, pitted and cut into wedges
    • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
    • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt, made from dairy, soy, or coconut
    • 1/2 lemon 
    • 1 tablespoon honey or maple syrup


    1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
    2. Lay the nectarine wedges on an oversized sheet of aluminum foil (big enough to fold the nectarines into a bundle) and sprinkle cinnamon over the slices.
    3. Fold the ends of the foil to wrap up the nectarines, so that they're enclosed on all sides.
    4. Place the foil bundle directly on the rack in the oven and bake for 15 minutes, or until the nectarines are soft enough to pierce with your fork.
    5. While the nectarines are baking, stir the yogurt, lemon juice, and honey or syrup together in a small bowl. Mix well.
    6. Remove the nectarines from the oven, serving 4 slices per plate.
    7. Top each nectarine with a spoonful of the yogurt sauce.
    8. You can also sprinkle with nuts or granola, for a little added flavor and texture.

    To promote a rich learning experience as you cook with your children, we encourage you to ask a variety of questions throughout the process. Provide plenty of encouragement and give them a change to show off what they know as they help out with the preparation of the dish!


    • When in season during the summer, take your child to the market to purchase nectarines for this dish as well as peaches, plums, apricots, and cherries, which are all members of the stone fruit family and are closely related. Ask your children to predict why they think they are all called "stone fruits." (Note: It's because they all have pits of "stones" inside.)
    • Having a tasting party while exploring the fruit stones or pits. Have your children describe the similarities and differences in appearance, texture, and taste. Encourage them to choose their favorite and ask them why they like it best.


    • Help your child remove the pits/seeds (or stones) from each of the fruits you purchased. Have them explore and describe each seed. Carefully split open the larger seeds and have your child investigate the inner-seed.
    • Search the Internet for a video clip on growing stone fruit, so you can watch the process of planting and harvesting together.
    • If you live in a climate that has lots of sunshine and an average temperature of 75 degrees, consider planting a nectarine, peach, or other stone fruit tree. Your local gardening nursery can help you choose the best variety to thrive in your region.


    • While shopping for the nectarines for this dish, have your child select four large, firm, pieces of fruit. While preparing the dish, have them count how many halves and quarters they get from the four nectarines you have purchased together.


    • If you're planning a cookout, you can use this recipe, grilling the nectarines instead of baking them.

    For more recipes, please visit NBCDI's online shop to purchase our Good for Me! cookbook.  


    Love Grows!

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    Flowers are a staple of every Mother’s Day. Transform the act of giving flowers into a family bonding activity by decorating beautiful flower pots and planting seeds with mom!


    • Visit an art supply store to purchase a small pot and decorate the pot with a variety of materials that celebrate mom. Let young children determine how they want to decorate the pot and with what materials.
    • Find soil and a package of seeds--either for plants, flowers, or fruits and vegetables.
    • Place the pot, a small bag of soil, and the seeds in a gift bag, or wrap beautifully.
    • When the gift is opened, spend time together planting the seeds with mom. While planting, ask your children what plants need to grow healthy and strong, where do they think the pot should be placed, and why?


    • Aids in social emotional growth by engaging in a relationship building activity.
    • Helps practice basic math skills by using measurement.
    • Promotes literacy progression by introducing a letter of the day that represents a healthy food.


    Making a Mother's Day Book

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    Children flex their creativity when using a mixture of photos, words, and drawings to create a customized Mother’s Day Book. Keep it simple or make a huge multi-media project. Let your children choose!


    • Select favorite family photos of mom with different members of your family and make a family album.
    • Use an online photo book creator, or print photos from a digital file on paper and create a beautiful collage.


    • Creating a book with family pictures promotes social emotional growth by fostering positive and nurturing views of oneself.
    • Great practice for understanding concepts of print, an essential literacy skill.