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JES Students Learn, Present History

JES Black History Third-grade students at Jones Elementary (JES) set up a live museum to teach fellow students about Black History. Now in its eighth year, students look forward to participating in the Black History Gallery Walk. For the museum, students created poster presentations about a famous leader of Black History. JES Teacher Nicolle Granderson first came up with the idea of the gallery walk as a way to expose students to history in an engaging way.

“History is very important and I wanted a way for students to gain exposure to the rich history of Black Americans and their accomplishments,” Granderson said. “This project allowed students to work across-curriculum in reading, writing, and social studies. They also learned how to research and compile information.”

Students had a month to research and prepare for the live museum. To begin, students submitted their top three choices of historical figures who positively impacted Black History that they wanted to cover. From there, they were assigned a person. The majority of the projects were completed at home with the help of parents and families. Students shared all the stories of their subject on a tri-fold poster board accompanied by an oral presentation.

“The gallery walk serves as a platform for the students to have a voice. Their pride was evident when they submitted their projects, and it was very touching,” Granderson said. “They all realized they had completed something very special and it is also a way for students to communicate orally to parents, students, and teachers. Given the opportunity that this experience provides, students excel and shine in ways never seen before.”

On the day of the gallery walk, JES opened the museum for students, staff, and families to experience. Hallways were filled with people listening as students gave their presentations. Many third-grade students dressed as their subject.

“So many parents and grandparents who visited the museum were in awe and personally thanked me for allowing their children to experience such an impactful event,” Granderson said.