Eighth-graders Are Exploring History & Taking Action

Creative Minds teachers Mr. Charrier, Mr. Caraway, and Mr. Dennison are leading 8th-grade students on a dive into US history and a plan for real-world action by way of a Confederate-monument action project.

Students are exploring and documenting the historical context for Confederate monuments and the reasons these monuments were erected: their ties to the promotion of White Supremacy and how their rise aligned with the deaths of Civil War veterans, Brown vs. Board of Education, and the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Next up for students is producing 60-second videos that argue for the removal of the Albert Pike memorial, the last Confederate statue in DC outside the Capitol Building. They’re proposing that a memorial to the 6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion—a unit of 855 African American women and the only all-female unit deployed to Europe during World War II—replace the statue of Pike in Judiciary Square.

In February, students will meet members of the 6888th and the producers of The Six Triple Eight, a documentary on the battalion, and we’ll share this experience with our neighbors at the Armed Forces Retirement Home.

Says Mr. Charrier about his creative, passionate students, “What I want is for them to like learning, be curious, and see that they have strength in their own voice.”