Each quarter as a part of their Multicultural and Social Studies programs, Grahamwood Elementary students in Grace Henderson and Katelynn Meadows 5th grade Optional classes select a group of countries around the world to research. From these findings, the students write a report highlighting key social, political, geographic and historical facts about their country which they present to the class. This quarter over 20 countries were selected.
For example, dressed in traditional garb, Daniel Bai presented on China, discussing culture and traditions as well as describing specialty foods. Afterwards, Daniel’s classmates asked him follow-up questions to expand upon what they learned.
Charlotte Miller’s country was Mexico. Charlotte wore a traditional Mexican-style dress that she helped her grandmother to make. She taught both peers and parents common Spanish words and phrases plus showed them how to dance the Rumba—which the whole group did!
Students along with their parents made food from their featured countries and the celebration ended with a feast shared by all.
“I previously taught in an international setting,” states Ms. Meadows, “and I wanted my students to have a similar experience. So, each student had to teach a cultural lesson that included not just facts but an action.”
Beyond the writing and history pieces, special cross-curricular multicultural lessons supporting this event were also taught in Math and Science. “The students had a wonderful time and learning experience,” observed Optional Coordinator Dr. D. Jackson Maxwell. “The experiential aspect of the lesson was key to showing that the students were able to apply what they had learned through demonstration. Plus, joining in was just plain fun!”