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Students celebrate Black History Month

Charley Garcia, Zuri Caldwell, Aniston Coppi and Yehuda Portal.

Students at Smith Elementary are celebrating Black History Month by competing in a door decorating contest that depicts a significant ​figure in history who made strides in the civil rights movement.

“They have done a great job decorating their doors,” said Smith Principal Rachel Nicks. “They have gotten very creative with the people they have chosen to highlight. They are all a great tribute for Black History Month.”

According to Mrs. Nicks, the upper grades will judge the best door for the lower grades, while the younger students will vote on the best decoration for the older students.

Ruby Bridges, who advanced the cause of civil rights in November 1960 when she became the first African American student to integrate an elementary school in the South, was featured on multiple doors, including Kim Guthrie's first-grade door. Students wrote how they have been brave like Ruby, who was only 6 when she had to be escorted by federal marshals to an all-white school every day.

Ivanna Santana, Ainsley Musyoki, Adonijah Rule and Stella Miller.

Michelle McCord's kindergarten door was covered in artwork as her students recreated the "Color is Life" work of Alma Thomas.

In addition, the 4th-graders in Mary Lorenson's math class followed the theme of "Hidden Figures" for their inspiring door. "Hidden Figures" tells the story of Katherine G. Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson, who were brilliant African-American women working at NASA and serving as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history - the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit. The visionary trio crossed all gender and race lines to inspire future generations.

As a special treat, the 4th-graders will watch "Hidden Figures" during their Valentine's party.

Kathryn Moore's 4th-grade language arts students created a book shelf for their door, which was titled, "Words have Power," and featured Black American authors.

Amelia Hernandez, Melanie Perez, Thaydan Fillingham and Kadon Beal.

​About the photos:

Kim Guthrie's 1st-graders, from left, Charley Garcia, Zuri Caldwell, Aniston Coppi and Yehuda Portal.

Michelle McCord's kindergarten students, from left, Ivanna Santana, Ainsley Musyoki, Adonijah Rule and Stella Miller.

Kathryn Moore's 4th-grade language arts students, from left, Amelia Hernandez, Melanie Perez, Thaydan Fillingham and Kadon Beal.