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Black History Month: Stoplight Activities

In support of Black History Month, we're highlighting Garrett Morgan, American inventor, entrepreneur and community leader. 

Have you ever been riding in a car or bus and watched a traffic light turn from green to yellow? Did the driver have time to stop safely, before the light turned to red? Traffic lights used to operate on two colors only. Red meant stop, green meant go, but without much time to react between the two, automobile accidents happened. After witnessing a very serious accident, inventor Garrett Morgan went into problem solving mode and created the third light in a traffic signal, yellow, which told motorists to slow down. In honor of this contribution to public safety, gather your family and create a color matching game and snack! 

Stoplight Colors Bean Bag Toss


  • Three hoola hoops or three large circles of paper, one of each color: red, yellow, green
  • Bean bags (three to four per player) in sets of red, yellow, and green


  1. Place the three colors of hoola hoops or large circles equally distant on the ground.
  2. From a starting line (place a line of tape on the ground about 3 feet from the first hoop or circle), stand with toes on the line and bean bags in hand. 
  3. Player 1 tosses bean bags into matching hoop or circle. Play continues until all players have tried to get as many bean bags into the matching hoop or circle.
  4. Winner is the player with the most matched bean bags in the targets.

Stoplight Snack


  • Small kabob skewer or toothpick
  • Kiwi, pineapple, and strawberry cut into circles


  1. Gently push the skewer or toothpick through the center (lengthwise) of the strawberry, then the pineapple, and last the kiwi.
  2. Hold up the snack and compare it to a photo of a traffic light.
  3. Eat and enjoy the safety inventor Garrett Morgan provided with his invention of the yellow (slow down) signal on traffic lights used around the world!