Elementary school sings of the dream

Sixth graders at Gardnerville Elementary School celebrated the spirit of Martin Luther King Jr. through song and dance.

"We've been teaching tolerance," said sixth-grade teacher Alison Mains-Lay on Feb. 1. "We just had Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and today is the first day of Black History month."

Each class performed a song or play in front of the entire student body in the multipurpose room.

Dana Beres' class revolved around an inflatable globe on the stage while holding up signs of different countries: Mexico, Iceland, China and Italy, among others.

"Make the world a better place for you and me and the entire human race," the students sang, as the globe bounced on the shoulders of three students in the middle.

Meredith Swanson-Jessup's class gave a performance.

One student said, "If blacks can't ride the bus in freedom, then they won't ride the bus at all!"

"So they walked," the class shouted in unison. "They marched on Birmingham and chanted 'We want freedom!'"

Mains-Lay's class performed a hip-hop dance with students dressed in black pants, white shirts and sporting neon green and orange hats.

They wore cool black shades, too. At the end of their dance, students threw hats into the crowd, then walked off the stage and formed a circle around their peers by holding hands. The lights suddenly went out and each student whipped out a flashlight.

"Share a little light," the students sang, as they walked around in a circle with their flashlights bobbing up and down, amid the excited cheer of their classmates.

Sixth-grader Taylor Cokley thought singing was a good way to express the dreams of Martin Luther King Jr.

"Everyone recognizes we're all free," he said.


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