(Image: Stephanie Fleary)
Second-grade teacher, Stephanie Fleary, breathes life into the statement, ‘a teacher’s job is never done.’ During black history month one of Fleary’s students, a 7 year old, informed her that she was not happy with her darker skin tone.
“Everyone in her family was lighter than her and she despised her dark skin. As a woman with a darker skin tone, I knew that colorism was an issue that needed to be discussed, even at this early age. I knew I had to find a way to teach my students to love and believe in themselves, no matter what shade of brown they are. I wanted to create something that would last beyond this classroom discussion. And voila, Chocolatey Brown was born,” said Fleary.
[Related: Cool Jobs: How Global Actress and Author Esosa E Paves Her Own Lane in a Creative Career]
Fleary, a first-generation Grenadian-American, has worked in education for over ten years.
“I’ve always had a passion for writing, but never imagined that I would become a self-published author. When I became a mother in 2007, my life’s purpose began to take form and my vision became clearer. I realized I was created to be a mother, an educator, and service provider for others. I accomplished two of the three so I was intrigued to discover how God would use me to serve others. In 2013, I published my first book, Dear Black Man, and started my personal development training company, Empowered Stilettos. Through my work with my son, students, and clients, I have found my purpose and aspire everyday to fulfill my destiny.”
Since most children will be home from school for summer break, the timing couldn’t be better to add Chocolatey Brown to a child’s reading list. BlackEnterprise.com caught up with Fleary for tips on teaching children to embrace their brown skin.
Continue reading on the next page…