Nicole Schoonmaker’s high school “English as a New Language” (ENL) students recently marked Black History Month by creating website featuring notable people in the Black community, showcasing their achievements and societal contributions.
“Creating a website for Black History Month is important to us because it shows support for other communities in our country,” said student Stephani Parks Ortiz. “Black History should not only be celebrated during the month of February, it is something that should always be remembered throughout the year. Many people don’t know what some members of the Black community did for this country, so this website can help in sharing some of those facts.”
Students researched who they wanted to include on their Google website. As part of that, they learned about the significance of Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day, Jubilee Day, Liberation Day, and Emancipation Day, celebrated on June 19 to commemorate the emancipation of enslaved people in the U.S. The holiday was first celebrated in Texas, where on that date in 1865, in the aftermath of the Civil War, slaves were declared free under the terms of the 1862 Emancipation Proclamation.
Students also read short stories highlighting aspects of Black culture and wrote book reviews. One of those books was Rachel Saar’s “Beautiful Me,” which was illustrated by Minisink Valley Class of 2017 alumnus Jack Golden.
To view: website: High School ENL Black History website