African American History Month celebrated on campus


Edwin He

In the hallway of the Amador library, a display features the contributions of influential African Americans from athletes to activists.

For the entirety of February, African American History Month highlights African Americans’ struggles and accomplishments. Through posters and activities, Amador Valley High School honors this particular month. 

In the hallway leading to the Amador library, a large display depicts various African Americans with significant contributions to American history. Each person has a drawn portrait and a short biography.

“We want to raise awareness of Black History by showing students prominent black (figures),” said Erik Scherer, Teacher Librarian. 

Not only are there unique decorations on campus, but in class, some teachers have special in-class activities for Black History Month. 

“In Mrs. Kamali’s class for Honors Freshman English, we are doing a podcast project where we select an influential black figure, preferably within recent history like in the last 20 years,” said Athrv Gupta (‘26). 

In groups of two or three, students research influential African Americas and discuss their contributions in a podcast. They have to choose African Americans that are less mainstream, which challenges them to dig deeper and learn new information.

“We’ve all heard of Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks, and Malcolm X. For this project, many students focus on influential African Americans in recent years that are relevant to the issues of their lives today,” said Stephanie Kamali, English teacher. 

The spotlight on lesser-known African Americans during Black History Month is essential to a greater acknowledgment of their important role in shaping American history. 

“I feel like some [African Americans]  just don’t get the recognition that they deserve. [We should] at least give one month to recognize what they’ve done for humanity,” said Gupta.

In Sara Marek’s Freshman English class, students participate in literature circles centered around Black History Month. They choose a book related to the topic to read and talk about. 

“I’m reading a book called American Street, which is about a Haitian immigrant moving to the United States,” said Ritwik Aeka ‘(26)

Students glimpse into new viewpoints while reading these books. They learn about new cultures, experience historical events from different standpoints, and overall, broaden their worldview, allowing them to become more accepting of others. 

“I think this activity and Black History Month as a whole is important for awareness and having people understand experiences that they can’t necessarily relate to,” said Aeka