For Black History Month, Endeavor fourth-graders present ‘living history’
HARVEST – To recognize Black History Month, fourth-graders at Endeavor Elementary School researched and presented vignettes of ‘living history’ of African-Americans on Feb. 12.
As a school, Endeavor “celebrates the diversity of students represented in the classroom and assists students in accepting and understanding the different races, ethnicities and cultures within the school environment,” fourth-grade teacher Pamela Henson said.
With this philosophy, Henson developed Endeavor’s Black History Month Celebration for students and the school community to further promote acceptance of diversity within the classroom, community and for the United States.
The celebration’s ultimate goal “was to allow students to experience history, rather than simply reading about it,” Henson said.
For four weeks, students researched topics and discovered facts about black Americans’ lives from the time of slavery to present day, fourth-grade parent Beth Trees said.
After classroom instruction, they constructed “a visual interpretation of the facts (as) pictures, biographical summaries and three-dimensional artifacts on 11-by-14 inch posters,” Henson said.
Students “creatively presented their historical pieces of the past with the concept of a ‘living museum'” led by fourth-grade teachers Marlo Freeman, Carol Heinse, Lori McCoy, Cindy Pressnell and Henson.
Henson wanted the fourth-graders “to display skills of leadership through verbal presentation of their projects to classmates (and) share their creativity with the school community, parents and community leaders.”
For the living museum, Endeavor fourth-graders presented project posters of African-American inventors, scientists, leaders, athletes, authors and those skilled in the arts — poetry, dance and music.
Matt Massey, Superintendent of Madison County Schools, spoke to the students about celebrating black history and celebrating school diversity. After the ceremony, parents followed a fourth-grade tour guide to each classroom “in which students brought to life creative presentations of historical black Americans,” Henson said.
“The students were able to experience history, create their own piece of history, grow in leadership and share their learning,” Henson said.