Celebrating Black History in Our Curriculum

  • We recognize Black history as American history. Therefore, many areas of the GVSD curriculum infuse learning about Black history throughout the year.

    The elementary schools embrace diversity across grade levels.

    • Read alouds and discussions highlight famous African Americans, both historical and modern day, throughout the Social Studies and Language Arts units.
    • Teachers utilize morning meeting times to celebrate differences among students as an ongoing effort to build an inclusive classroom community.
    • Diverse cultures are honored in the study of non-fiction text through the Reading Units of Study, focusing on subjects and authors from a variety of cultures and ethnicities.
    • Prominent historical figures, including Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, and Jackie Robinson, as well as key events of the Civil Rights Movement are a focus throughout the Social Studies curriculum.

    The middle school has both building-wide and grade level and content area lessons planned to highlight the important contributions of African-Americans to society. These activities include, but are not limited to the following:

    • Daily morning show announcements highlighting various African-Americans and their contributions to society.
    • Recognition of diverse individuals and their contributions to a specific discipline within grade level courses and embedded in the respective units of study.
      • In Family & Consumer Science, students learn about African-American cuisine and traditional recipes.
      • In Art, as students are exposed to various artists and their styles they work to develop their own personal aesthetic.
      • Students explore various genres of music including R&B, jazz, and reggae.
    • Asynchronous activities in social studies classes to learn about prominent historical figures such as Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, and Jackie Robinson.
    • The inclusion of a variety of diverse texts and themes in English Language Arts classes.
    • The Students of Color Affinity Group (SOC) is a club that offers a safe space for Black, Indigenous, and Students of Color to connect and engage in open and authentic dialogue.

    Great Valley High School continues to work across the curriculum to incorporate both equity and diversity for all students. To highlight just a few of the many things taking place we’d like to share:

    • In the English department, the goal is to avoid the impression that diverse literature is taught only during a particular time of year.  Marginalized voices are recognized through an ever broadening repertoire of literature in all English courses. Specific to African American voices, a wide range of fiction and nonfiction texts and short stories are utilized across grade levels. Many selections are authored by African American authors while other selections work to open a dialogue about appropriate representation, stereotyping and prejudice.  Students are often encouraged to recognize voices that are heard and voices that are silent within text. The overall goal is to provide a growing space for compassion and understanding of diverse voices.
    • In Social Studies, historical and current events are often the source of embedding diversity across the grade levels. Students are consistently exposed to diversity and equity as a part of our history and our present society. Social Justice is an integral part of our content area where students are encouraged to have dialogue which includes recognizing marginalized populations.
    • Art courses throughout the high school have incorporated a number of African American artists. Focus on the artist is embedded into the style or time period being studied. The department utilizes their Instagram account to highlight various artists throughout the year.