Letter from Lara Zelski – January 29, 2020

Dear ANCS Family and Friends,

Congratulations to Ellijah Berkowitz-Douglas for winning the 4th – 8th grade Geo Bee! Thanks to Mrs. Taylor and Mrs. Alsher for sponsoring the Geo Bee and for helping make geography exciting for our students.

I just want to give you all a heads up that I have been notified that a large tree will be removed on Oakland Ave., SE on Friday, January 31. Augusta Pl, SE will be closed to thru traffic between Pavillion St, SE and Bass St., SE from 9:00 am until 4:00 pm. The purpose of the closure is to safely conduct the tree removal work. Please plan your afternoon route to school accordingly.

Beginning on January 21, our focus for morning meeting is celebrating Black History Month. Each week until the end of February we will share interesting historical facts and highlight important African Americans in morning meeting. We have a committee here at school that has planned a lot of activities to celebrate African American culture. Mrs. Shelley (our librarian) is sharing some beautiful books that focus on Black History each Thursday. Classroom teachers will continue the learning in their classrooms through conversations and exploration.

It is important for me to note that while we are highlighting African Americans and significant historical events in history during this period of time, we recognize that one cannot separate Black history from American history as a whole. Though we are choosing to highlight certain African Americans throughout Black History Month, it is important to us that students learn about famous, and not so famous, African Americans through our regular curriculum and in their own exploration of history. If you have someone you would like to highlight in our morning meeting, please feel free to reach out to Tilifayea Griffin.

Just a little background on how Black History Month was started. Historian, Carter Godwin Woodson, was concerned by what he viewed as scholarly neglect or misrepresentation of his people. In 1926 he announced the second week of February to be “Negro History Week.” This week was chosen because it marked the birthday of both Abraham Lincoln and Fredrick Douglas. Black History Month has been observed in America since 1976, but is also celebrated throughout the world, including Canada and the U.K.

As always, I am happy to answer any questions you may have. Enjoy the remainder of your week!