Fairley fourth graders recently took a step back in time as they revisited the ideological and military battles of 1862.
As part of a social studies unit, students learned about slavery, the Women’s Suffrage Movement and the Civil War.
Those classroom studies culminated in a performance of “The Keeper’s Voice,” in which students interacted with actors from Merry-Go-Round Playhouse and acted as members of the Five Nations.
The performance put students at the center of the action, as they represented members of a Haudenosaunee village while they listened as an actress, portraying suffragist and abolitionist Matilda Gage, discussed her views on Civil Rights.
The students used their knowledge of the Iroquois Confederacy and its stance on equality to further Gage’s argument for women’s rights.
Throughout the performance, students reflected on Haudenosaunee culture and how those beliefs and values aligned with Gage’s.
Fourth grade teachers noted that the performance brought several lessons together and helped reinforce classroom material, including the Civil Rights Movement, Women’s Suffrage, New York State history and the political system.