By Madeja Stewart, AmeriCorps Member Serving at McDonough Elementary School.
PITW #93 (bing!): Celebrate all holidays. By embracing and celebrating the holidays of all cultures, we share in the joy of each other’s cultures and enrich our community.
Here at City Year New Hampshire, we are taught the power and significance of inclusivity. “Inclusivity involves more than the celebration of diversity; it means actively embracing differences as vital assets that enrich our community, catalyze transformation, and strengthen our collective power to make positive change.” On the McDonough team, we strive to teach our students about social justice and equal rights through our everyday interactions. McDonough Elementary School makes it a point to discuss politics and social injustices in it’s 3rd – 5th grade classrooms and encourages it’s students to be big citizens starting now. This year, our team decided to celebrate Black History Month by creating a bulletin board highlighting the accomplishments of some lesser known Black inventors. By doing this, we show our students that success doesn’t just have one look or skin tone. We can all achieve our dream and make an imprint on the world and the hearts of those around us. Furthermore, it helps us to strengthen the beloved community within our school.
Our Black History Month bulletin board showcases inventors and inventions that our scholars may encounter on a daily basis. It includes Madame CJ Walker, the first female self-made millionaire in America; Lewis Latimer, the inventor of the electric light bulb; Marie Van Brittan Brown, the inventor of the home security system; Patricia Bath, the inventor of the Laserphaco Probe for cataract treatment, Gerald Lawson, the inventor of the first home video gaming system, and more. It shows students that in a strong community, you recognize that we must depend on one another’s different ideas and values to succeed and advance in the world. By celebrating each other’s achievements and holidays, we are able to continue making inclusivity the norm amongst the communities we serve.