Hartfield Students Observe Black History Month Through a God-Focused Lens

Throughout the month of February, Hartfield classes took the opportunity to honor some of our nation’s most revered historical figures in observance of Black History Month. In keeping with year-long engaging and Christ-centered instruction, teachers incorporated elements that honor America’s well-known and potentially less-known influential figures into weekly instruction. 
K4 classes learned about historical figures and their impact upon our world, such as Rosa Parks’s bravery, George Washington Carver’s scientific and agricultural brilliance, and Garrett Morgan’s traffic light invention. K4 teacher Amy Cunningham shares, “We wanted to show our students how amazing these men and women were!,” describing the center activities that were introduced with each lesson, such as decorating their own school buses, playing with shaving cream, and doing a traffic light activity.
“I think the bravery and strength of these men and women really stood out to our students! Even at the young age of 4-5, they have been able to see the impact kindness, strength and the love of Christ can have on the world. By teaching our students about these brave individuals, we are teaching them that no matter what, with the strength of God, we can stand up for what is right and show love!”
Upper elementary students have also integrated Black History Month activities into their classwork this month. Fifth grade students conducted a writing project in which they studied a famous African American of their choosing. Some of the students picked musicians such as Louis Armstrong, political figures such as Barack Obama and Condoleezza Rice, activists such as John Perkins, and athletes such as Serena Williams and Jackie Robinson. After researching their chosen individual, students wrote an essay about their life as well as their achievements and the impact they made on their community.  Additionally, fifth grade classes like Mrs. Schurb’s class read the historical fiction novel Glory Be by Augusta Scattergood, set in a fictional Mississippi town in segregation-era 1964.  
“(Glory Be) is told through the eyes of a 10-year-old girl, so the kids can relate to some of her feelings, yet also see how different her world was than the one we live in today,” said Schurb. “We have looked closely at how we would act if we didn’t agree with the normal behavior of the time, and whether we would go along with our peers or have the confidence to share our beliefs.”
Mrs. Lori Jones’s middle school English classes explored their own interpretations of Black History Month and its significance in the past couple weeks. Students took to pen and paper to parse out their observations about Black History Month, which inspired many conversations between students of different backgrounds and perspectives that will hopefully continue past this month. 

While the aforementioned activities are only a few examples of ways in which students take part in education through a God-centered lens, an overarching priority is that students will grow in understanding and awareness of the ways in which history is impacted by the profound bravery and brilliance of America’s diverse collection of everyday heroes, just like the ones celebrated during Black History Month.
Hartfield Academy is fully accredited by both the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS), the MidSouth Association of Independent Schools (MAIS), the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) and the Southern Association of independent Schools (SAIS).