JI Honors Black History Month with Gallery Walk


Lucy Dixon, Staff Writer

To honor Black History Month, JICHS held the “Good Trouble Gallery Walk and Wear and Share” in the library. The event lasted from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on February 25 and 26.

The Good Trouble Gallery Walk was organized by PROJECT LIT, a movement promoting reading, and United Brothers And Sisters Association (UBASA), a nonprofit organization supporting civil rights and bringing awareness to black history.

Every year the United Brothers and Sisters Association organizes an event like the gallery walk. This year, English teacher Michele Johnson, the adviser of UBASA at JICHS, said, “We came up with the idea together that we would do a gallery walk to serve as a mini-visual of the civil rights movement and everyone who played a role.”

The gallery walk was made up of a series of displays that covered everything from important events to leaders and figures representing the civil rights movement, along with strong messages of peace and equality.

“Those tables were teaching tables to give everybody a visual of what activism looks like and that we all play a part in making our nation a great nation,” said Ms. Johnson.

The “Good Trouble” gallery walk was named after John Lewis, a former civil rights activist and U.S. representative of Georgia, who passed away in July of 2020.

The gallery walk was very inclusive, and also had displays about Native, Asian, and Hispanic Americans’ histories, along with a display on the LGBTQ+ community.

“We wanted the main takeaway to be that everyone has had to endure some type of civil rights fight for liberty. Everyone can participate in the activist movement, and I think that was what John Lewis wanted people to get,” added Johnson. “When we think about movement in the history books, it’s pretty disjointed. We don’t see the overlap, we don’t see the color, and in the gallery walk each section told a story. We want people to leave that library feeling empowered.”

The gallery walk was interactive and had many artifacts including newspaper clippings, photographs, and scrapbooks. Teachers, librarians, students, clubs, and more contributed to creating the gallery walk.

With coronavirus the gallery walk was not as easy to put together as previous years. Less students were allowed to help, only 10 students from UBASA, 2 students from Student Government Association, and 3 students from Teacher Cadet. However, Johnson says; “even though I had a smaller group, they worked hard. They came after school, they came during school, whenever they had time. I am very satisfied with what they did.”

Johnson added, “I am excited to do more next year, and hopefully we will be able to get more students involved. If there is anyone interested in joining UBASA, we are an inclusive group and we work to highlight all underserved communities. If you liked the gallery walk and travelling, you need to join UBASA.”

To learn more about UBASA email Michele Johnson at [email protected].

The gallery walk was a big success. All of the displays were interesting and informative, and it was a great way to honor Black History Month.