A Seattle mom helped her daughter dress up as Harriet Tubman, Toni Morrison, Misty Copeland, and even more amazing black women for Black History Month.

By Hollee Actman Becker

Today is the last day of February, which is Black History Month. And in order to celebrate it, every day for the last 28, Seattle mom Cristi Smith-Jones has been posting pictures to Twitter and Facebook of her daughter Lola dressed up as a different famous black woman. The result? One seriously epic photo series.

Just check out this shot of her 5-year-old (on the left) dressed up as infamous changemaker Rosa Parks (pictured at 42):

Pretty powerful, right?

During the past month, Cristi has also dressed Lola up as such modern icons as ballerina Misty Copeland:

She's been Nobel Prize- and Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Toni Morrison:

She's channeled civil rights activist Harriet Tubman:

And she's honored scientist Dr. Mae Jemison, the first African-American woman to travel into space:

So incredible! And according to Cristi, it all started back in January when Lola came home from school and told her parents she had learned about Martin Luther King Jr.

"She seemed to understand where we were coming from," Cristi told CNN, then added: "Since it's a heavy topic, we wanted to find a way to make learning about black history fun for her."

So the creative mama compiled a list of women in history and showed their pictures to Lola so she could choose the ones she wanted to dress up as. Cristi then shot most of the pics on her phone—her photog friend Kayleigh Stefanko also lent a hand—with Lola tricked out in various wigs and old family clothes and accessories.

The project may have started out as a way to add some levity to a heady topic, but the result is a poignant and empowering celebration of 28 iconic black women. In fact, Cristi's education-through-art is probably one of the most effective methods of teaching about Black History Month we've ever seen. Way to go, Mama—you and that brilliant little muse of yours are truly inspiring!

Check out the rest of the incredible images on Cristi's Twitter feed.

Hollee Actman Becker is a freelance writer, blogger, and mom of two who writes about parenting and pop culture. Check out her website holleeactmanbecker.com for more, and then follow her on Instagram and Twitter.

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Comments (3)

Anonymous
February 4, 2020
OK... the "Anonymous" comment above is mine... went through the registration process and yet it still posted as anonymous. Oh well! I'd like to reiterate to educators out there that *this* is the type of thing we should see en masse in our schools. Make education relevant and get your kids actively engaged. Don't worry about test scores and teaching to the test; if you teach them skills, how to think, etc. the scores would come. I once received a $500 bonus for doing just that. More Project Based Learning and Problem Based Learning!
Anonymous
February 4, 2020
WOW! Truly amazing and kudos to Lola, her mom, and her photog friend! As a career educator I think this is the *best lesson plan ever*! Truly immersed in the subject matter, actively engaged, I'm sure that her classmates (and teacher) learn copiously through this and anxiously await to see what she'll show up as the next day! If only *all school* could be like this, instead of dreary "teach to standardized tests" assignments which suck the will to learn out of our kids!
Anonymous
February 4, 2020
WOW! Truly amazing and kudos to Lola, her mom, and her photog friend! As a career educator I think this is the *best lesson plan ever*! Truly immersed in the subject matter, actively engaged, I'm sure that her classmates (and teacher) learn copiously through this and anxiously await to see what she'll show up as the next day! If only *all school* could be like this, instead of dreary "teach to standardized tests" assignments which suck the will to learn out of our kids!