New Canaan Country School’s Lower School (Grades 1-4) celebrated the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with curricular activities, reflections and gatherings culminating in an assembly, Jan.15, held using online platforms.
As is school tradition, members of the school community participated in a group recitation of a portion of Dr. King's “I Have a Dream” speech followed by words of reflection on the importance of diversity, equity and inclusivity from Head of School Aaron Cooper. Fourth grade students who participated in the group recitation included Devon Rudd of Stamford, Corey Wideman of Norwalk and Maddie Oritz of Stamford.
Four first grade students then shared a hope or dream for the future.
“I have a dream that everyone won’t use violence, but instead use kindness,” said Rowan Glennan of Ridgefield. “I have a dream that everyone will treat each other the way they want to be treated,” said Enzo Martinez of Norwalk. “I have a dream that everyone will be thankful,” said Lily Burnes of Darien. Miles Porter, also of Ridgefield, offered: “I have a dream that people will be treated equally and it won’t matter what’s on the outside of a person, but what’s inside.”
Additional student speakers at the Lower School Assembly included second graders Caitlyn Wideman of Norwalk, Grace Overman of Bedford Hills, NY and Christopher Suozzi of New Canaan. Grace and Christopher read the essays they wrote for Senator Murphy’s essay contest.
"As we continue to consider year after year, the courage and example of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr, his words and teachings, the past several months and weeks have offered us many glimpses into how easy it is for there to be a breakdown in civic discourse across differences. We are thus reminded of how important it is to be steadfast in our social justice efforts if we are to help our students and community embody good citizenship. Several examples exist of people working to turn Dr. King’s dream into a reality.” said Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Kojo Clarke, who helped to organize the school's commemoration and study of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. along with teachers, administrators and the school's six-member faculty-staff team of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Facilitators.
New Canaan Country School is a co-ed, independent day school for students in Pre-K (ages 3 & 4) through Grade 9 living in Westchester and Fairfield counties. Graduates excel at top day, boarding and public secondary schools and go on to lead lives of impact and purpose. For more information, please visit countryschool.net.