ASHLAND • Ashland Elementary School celebrated Valentine's Day a little different this year. Instead of the traditional passing out candy and professing love for others, the 5th grade students put on a wax museum. Each student was given an influential person to portray. Some were famous civil rights leaders and supporters, others were current trailblazers. The purpose of the wax museum was to educate students on the importance of finding a cause that they can support and doing whatever it take to make that work for them. The assignment also taught them that there are no limits to the things they can achieve, if they continue to work hard.
Fifty-seven students participated in the wax museum. Jaylon Moore portrayed Ryan Williams, a teenage business owner turned millionaire by age 30. Karibbean Rounds taught us about Alysia Montano, an Olympic runner; and an 800 meter dash winner, at 8 months pregnant! Harvey-Anna Holloway learned about a woman named Jackie Aina, who is trying to change the cosmetic game to incorporate more women of color. Each student learned a valuable life lesson, and not only did they learn a lesson; they couldn’t wait to teach everyone else about it!
The students learned about dancers and composers; singers and writers; they learned how some of their favorite rappers are trying to change the world for the better. They learned how people were tested and struggled and how they never gave up. They achieved their dreams and made it possible for others to achieve their dreams. Parents came out and were able to participate in the wax museum. One parent said, “This is the coolest thing I have ever seen. These kids have taught me so many things I didn’t know?”
At the conclusion of the wax museum, most students asked if they could do another one later in the year.