Berkshire students observe Black History Month
Berkshire students present reports
Students in teacher Laura Jones’ fourth-grade class at Berkshire Elementary School marked Black History Month by spending three weeks researching the lives of African Americans from history and from today.
Students made posters full of facts and and photos and presented their findings during multi-media presentations to their classmates, who had a chance to ask questions after each report.
Jones was on hand to involve students in the discussions and answer some of the questions they raised by accessing the Internet on her laptop.
When a student asked what other instruments Louis Armstrong played beside the trumpet, she found a picture of a coronet on the Web and showed it to the class.
She also played a section of Armstrong’s song, “What a Wonderful World,” to add to student Olivia Hare’s research.
Presentations ran the gamut from Michael Jackson to Rosa Parks to Vivien Thomas, a surgeon’s assistant at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore who helped develop procedures to treat blue baby syndrome, a condition resulting in oxygen deprivation.
Thomas was the subject of the HBO movie, “Something the Lord Made.”
A little known fact about Oprah Winfrey revealed during student Destiny Labra’s presentation: Winfrey’s name was supposed to be Orpah after a woman in the Bible’s Book of Ruth, but someone misspelled it on her birth certificate.
Jones said she is thinking of organizing a similar project involving research and oral and written presentations that incorporate access to computers for Women’s History month in March.
Berkshire Elementary student MacKenzie Lina, left, talks to her classmates about champion gymnast Gabrielle Douglas, while classmate Olivia Hare holds her poster.
Destiny Labra talks to her class at Berkshire Elementary about the life of talk show host and producer Oprah Winfrey while D.J. Melton holds her poster.
Berkshire Elementary fourth-grade teacher Laura Jones engages students in conversations about well-known African Americans from history and today.
Corina Matheson, center, reads from her poster about basketball star LeBron James while classmate Malaika Ngugi holds her poster on Feb. 17 at Berkshire Elementary. Watching with interest is teacher Laura Jones.
MacKenzie Lina, left, uses a laptop to advance pages on screen, while Olivia Hare presents her report on music legend Louis Armstrong on Feb. 17 at Berkshire Elementary.
Berkshire student Emma Berger, right, reads from her research about famous singer Bessie Smith while her father, Brandon Berger, holds her poster.