How to Make An Entire School Feel Great in Three Seconds Flat? African Dance!
The last day before Thanksgiving break, MMS students, faculty, and staff gathered in the gym for an assembly. At a certain point, the fifth and sixth graders quietly slipped out the back door, and when they returned they came running in, hands in the air, feet kicking, as an African beat reverberated around the room. This was the start of MMS’ first African Dance performance—an immediate hit!
The students, who were taught by instructor Ethel Calhoun during the prior six weeks, danced in a style that originates from Guinea. They began as a group, then quickly circled up, so people could jump forward and perform solos. A palpable, celebratory energy surged through the room, as the audience fed off the dancers’ “rush of adrenaline,” as fifth grader Maddie K. describes it.
“This is my first time doing African dance” said Mira G., fifth grader “and for me it has been an amazing experience. I enjoy African dance because it is fun to learn about how different people dance.” She added, “When I graduate from MMS I would like to continue doing African dance because I think that it is good exercise and it brings me joy.”
Miah B., another fifth grader, said that while dancing felt “out of my comfort zone” at first, she embraced the message of Ms. Calhoun, who “always tells us to shine our light and not be scared.” She loved the “amazing rhythm” of the music and the “feeling of happiness, joy, and excitement” that it fostered in her.
Teachers and students, alike, left the assembly feeling giddy and invigorated. In short, it was the perfect kickoff to the Thanksgiving Break.
MMS parents: Check out more photos on Vidigami!