Wednesday, April 25, 2012

PC visits Eric Carle Museum exhibition

Paris, New York, Boston...Smith College, Harvard, and Columbia. All points on the map that our intrepid cohort of high school youth coaches have paid visits to in recent years as they explore new countries, colleges, and cultures. And yet Wednesday's visit to the Eric Carle Museum marked the first time that we have embarked upon a field trip designed specifically for our younger program participants - 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students from Gerena School.

In keeping with this year's focus on pivotal role-models in sports - such as Jackie Robinson, Althea Gibson, and Roberto Clemente - students were given the opportunity to learn more about the impact that the Negro Leagues had on the American sport landscape, and society as a whole. After viewing a presentation of Ken Burns' seminal Baseball series, students explored a dynamic exhibit of vibrant oil paintings that brought the stars of this often-forgotten generation of ball players to life. Legends such as Satchel Paige and the enigmatic catcher Josh Gibson - widely considered among the greater players of their generation, regardless of color, fascinated students, who were particularly captivated by Studs Turkel's analysis that "Gibson wasn't the black Babe Ruth...Ruth was the white Josh Gibson", and stories of Paige's fastball (famously referred to as "The Midnight Rider")!

As students took in the artwork, they were asked to consider which paintings best illustrated important themes such as "dignity", "prejudice" and "pride", and then even got the chance to make their own sketches of the artwork.

Our sincere thanks go to Billy McBride from the board of directors of the museum, Greg Rosnick, and Principal Diane Gagnon for providing this wonderful opportunity for our students, as well as the Gerena PC teaching team for sharing this great day with our kids!

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