For the month of February, Woodward Elementary School in Delaware is hosting the “Telling A People’s Story” traveling panel exhibit on loan from the Miami University Art Museum.
The exhibit contains resources, books and illustrated literature, as well as panel displays that teach students about “the cultural, historical, and social makeup of African American cultural identity, while also shedding light on the long neglected world of African American authors and illustrators in the pantheon of children’s literature.”
Woodward Principal Eric Barr said the school learned about the exhibit last year, but it was in such high demand, that this month was the first time they were able to get the exhibit loaned to them. Barr said Woodward staff does “an awesome job” every year during Black History Month to put together different projects and activities with the students. He added each year, the school tries to have “different engaging activities available for the students.”
“It’s really a very cool exhibition,” Barr said. “For Black History Month each year we try to bring in informative and interactive resources for the students. Last year, we were able to bring in the historical society. This year, we were fortunate enough to have the opportunity to have this exhibition come to the school.”
Barr added the exhibition is interactive and is a new learning opportunity for students.
“The exhibition celebrates the complex and diverse African American experience through literature,” he said. “It gives our students an opportunity to engage in books and the exhibit’s timeline to get a better understanding of historical figures and the roles they played within our history. It’s a really interactive, fun opportunity for the staff and students to have additional resources at the school.”
Barr said he hopes Woodward students come away from the exhibition with a better understanding of African American history and themselves.
“We have a very diverse population of students, and we celebrate our diversity here at school,” he said. “I’m hoping students gain a sense of pride for their diverse backgrounds and who they are, and they get an opportunity to learn more about their diverse backgrounds as well. One of the unique factors about Woodward is that we are a very diverse school, and I think it’s just really important that we continue to celebrate our diversity and have opportunities for our students to feel connected. This is a great opportunity for the kids.”
Barr added the school has the exhibit through the rest of the month and hopes to bring more learning opportunities like it to the school each year during Black History Month.
More information about the exhibition can be found at blogs.miamioh.edu/tellingapeoplesstory.
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.