“Every child deserves to see themselves in the world around them,” Sarah Caputo, art & music teacher at Positive Tomorrows, said.
Mrs. Sarah, along with Director of Education Amy Brewer, work to incorporate cultural and diversity curriculum into the classrooms and extracurricular activities at Positive Tomorrows throughout the school year. This February, they are helping our kiddos and staff celebrate Black History Month.
Guest speakers this month include Cheryl Coleman, musician, author of Before the Land Run: The Historic All-Black Towns of Oklahoma, and librarian with the Metropolitan Library System. Some of the people, topics and events covered this month include jazz music, NASA astronaut, Dr. Mae Jemison, New Orleans architecture, painter Jacob Lawrence, the Harlem Renaissance and journalist Ida B. Wells.
Mrs. Sarah, who serves on the board of Inclusion in Art, a nonprofit focused on bringing diversity and inclusion into the arts in Oklahoma, was inspired to work on developing a cultural curriculum that could be used across all classrooms and throughout the year.
She utilizes many sources for material including organizations like NASA, We Need Diverse Books, Scholastic and Oklahoma A+ Schools. She also likes to try to research people and events that can incorporate an experiential learning component, so inventors are a wonderful group of people to include. She also gets direct feedback from Positive Tomorrows’ teachers about topics or people they would like to cover.
Many of the books in Positive Tomorrows’ Literacy Lab (the library) and Mrs. Sarah’s own art & music library come from these same sources. Mrs. Sarah and Ms. Brewer work closely to make sure the books in the library represent a wide diversity for all students.
“If there is a young African-American girl in one of our classes who wants to grow up to be an astronaut, I want to be able to show her that there are people who look like her who have accomplished that dream,” Mrs. Sarah said.
View this year’s Black History Month curriculum.