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Different Perspectives of History

A few Tallahassee students spent time away from the textbooks and took a hands-on walk through our nation's history Wednesday, and while some of the subject matter was a bit sensitive in nature, the students seemed to be all ears.

The lesson touched on things, which our not in many of our classroom textbooks, including the civil rights movement and even slavery. The event is entitled "blended lives" and it's part of a weeklong study of our nation's history.

For about a month now, fourth grade Leon County students have been immersed in issues relating to slavery and the civil rights movement by singing freedom songs" and listening to stories from those who lived through the movement.

"On that front row or that front seat, you were not supposed to sit there, you knew you were in the back," says Lucille Alexander.

The students are learning a lesson in local black history through the eyes of both black and white residents.

"They get a chance to here life stories about history and I think that's very good," Maggie Lewis says.

The students floated between the historic riley house museum and the Goodwood Plantation. At the Riley House, students saw photographs of buildings labeled colored only, and other photos depicting sit-ins and boycotts.

"Some people weren't treated as they should be The Whites got treated better, and the Blacks just got hand me downs," says Drew Sarvary.

Students at the Goodwood Plantation learned the buildings in they'd toured were built by slaves in the 1830's.

"Usually, you would think that the people that built houses, they would go to school to do it, but the people who built those houses, they weren't trained to do it, they just did what their master told them to do," Floya Fisher says.

Fourth grader Justin Johnson says he took home an important lesson from all of this.

"Freedom is right, instead of wrong, and that it made me feel good inside to be free, and sing these songs," says Justin.

In addition to the visits at the Riley and Goodwood Museums, the students also took a tour to see some of Tallahassee's historic landmarks.

Maggie Lewis with Leon County Schools says with this event running until Friday, every fourth grader in Leon County will take part in these workshops, and since forth grade is the year students are introduced to Florida history, this event ties in to their curriculum.


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