Amityville Schools Celebrate Black History Month

Amityville Schools Celebrate Black History Month photo

Students throughout the district marked Black History Month with a series of performances that included skits and songs.

Kindergartners at Northeast Elementary School dressed up in the colors of the rainbow for their singalong, which included “Funga Alafia,” “Sing About Martin,” “This Little Light of Mine” and “Scat Like That.” The performance closed with a short musical production, “The Crayon Box That Talked,” which celebrates the creation of harmony through diversity.

Northwest Elementary School hosted an evening presentation for families in which students depicted renowned activists, athletes and entertainers and also recreated significant moments in history. The show started with a scene of two children at home deciding what to watch on television. They flipped through various channels and learned more about Black history.

On the History Channel, they saw “live” reporting from the news field at the Montgomery, Alabama bus boycott, Ruby Bridges becoming the first African-American child to attend school in New Orleans and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. making his “I Have a Dream Speech.” The Oprah Winfrey Show included interviews with C.J. Walker, Will Smith and President Barack Obama, ESPN featured clips on gymnast Simone Biles, boxer Muhammad Ali and basketball player LeBron James, and the music channel had performances by the third-grade Select Choir of “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” sometimes referred to as the black national anthem, “I’ve Been to Harlem” and a Kwanzaa poem. 

Edmund W. Miles Middle School students performed “A Walk Through Time.” It focused on a student who questioned her teacher on why she needed to learn Black history. Later, she had a dream in which she was spoken to by Harriet Tubman, Marcus Garvey and Thurgood Marshall, experienced music by Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston and TLC, and saw a reenactment of a debate between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama on his path to becoming the Democratic presidential nominee in 2008.

Amityville Memorial High School’s presentation included individual and group performances. Musical acts included the “Rise Up,” “Shades of Blue” and a modern African dance. There were informational pieces on African-American inventors and abolitionists, historically black colleges and universities, and the Black Panther Party movement. The audience experienced African-American history in both the United States and worldwide through music and the spoken word.

At Park Avenue Memorial Elementary School, the theme for black history night was emancipation. Students focused on black history figures who played keys parts in the freeing of the slaves as well as the Emancipation Proclamation. The chorus performed the Black National Anthem ("Lift Every Voice") as well as sang along to the story, "Follow the Drinking Gourd," which relates to journey of the underground railroad. There was also had a step performance. Mr. Williams, the MC played a Trivia game at the end with parents and students using information from the presentations throughout the night.