Oh, what fun it is to learn about Africa!
As the festivities for African Awareness Month continued at schools across the island, the celebrations headed to the east this morning.
Africa is said to have an interactive culture; so to commemorate the month, there was no holding back the staff and students of the Gordon Walter Primary School in St Patrick’s, Christ Church –– nor the students’ parents. Feet, hands, drums and several other instruments all joined together today to “speak” the African language of jubilation.
As smiles etched the faces of the children, as they boldly and keenly showed off their best African garb, it was evident the day would be fun–filled. The school echoed excitement and enthusiasm as special guests visited to entertain and educate the audience about the “motherland”.
Under the theme Sankofa –– Return And Get It. Learning From Our Past, there were, among other activities, storytelling and dancing by the Pinelands Creative Workshop, who displayed several acrobatic tricks, drummed and thrilled the young ones. Ghanian native Juliana Boamah taught the children about the culture, customs, languages and natural resources found in her homeland. And she advised the fathers present to play always a role in the upbringing of their children, even if they did not live in the same home, adding that family honour was very important in Ghana.
But the highlight was most definitely the 45-minute session of theatre director Sonia Williams. Accompanied by drummer John Howell, then later PCW’s Rodney Grant, she dashed away her footwear and engaged the children in a musical period.
From principal Tyrone Marshall to teacher Tamara Moseley, to parents peering through the doors, everyone was captivated by her performance.
There was no need for a microphone as her diction was clear, her words easily understood. And as she ran through the audience, the nearest tots to those sitting far in the back of the room were able to repeat each word she said as they got involved in the happening. To say they were immersed in the activities would be an understatement.
Some took to the stage to learn some of the dance moves which Sonia taught and the others who weren’t able to fit on the stage stood in the crowd and showed they knew a thing or two.
The African Awareness celebrations at Gordon Walters Primary end on Friday.