Students across the Vancouver School District continue to celebrate and share their year-round learnings as they mark Black History Month this February.
At Hudson Elementary, students in grades 6 and 7 from the same learning group met every lunch hour over two weeks leading up to February, with the goal to put together a video. They composed messages about anti-racism, about Black history, and about people in the Black community who inspire them. One student wrote a rap, another a poem.
“Why did we have to start being rude to people that are different in any way?” reads Tia. “What did people with colour do wrong? We are all people, we are all the same species, we’re all on the Earth, aren’t we?”
Using a green screen, the students recorded a five-minute video and insisted on a background that shows drawings of children with varying cultural backgrounds, smiling and holding hands. ’Say no to racism!’ appears above. The students shared the video online with teachers and classes at the school.
“The students appreciated the opportunity to speak about racism and to share creatively ways that we can value and celebrate the accomplishments of people of colour,” explains Regina Vosahlo, vice-principal of Hudson Elementary. “This group of intermediate leaders was passionate about having the chance to spread this message to children and staff at our school community in hopes that we will all choose a path of acceptance and compassion for others.”
At Windermere Secondary, a number of art installations and books placed around the school bring attention to amplifying Black voices. For example, one piece focuses on how to be an ally and highlights the importance of educating oneself, of speaking up and of listening to the messages of others.
The District looks forward to continuing to share how students celebrate and explore Black history. Revisit vsb.bc.ca for more stories throughout the month.