The past came alive recently for second graders in Janice Anderson's second grade classroom at Johnson Elementary when members of the famed Buffalo Soldiers unit of the U.S. Army visited from the late-1800s.
dressed in period uniforms, the visitors were actually Carl Wright,
Shelley White, John Roper and Robert Joyce. Wright and White are sons of
original Buffalo Soldiers; all are members of the the San Diego Chapter
Buffalo Soldiers -- 9th and 10th Cavalry Association, an organization
that helps keep the memory alive of two cavalry units and two all-black
infantry regiments that were part of the Army from 1866 to the 1950s.
second graders learned another part of the integration struggle, as
this all-Black unit helped protect settlers, cattle herds and railroad
crews in the west.
"I think the students better understand that
the fight for integration did not begin in with only during the life of
Dr. Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks, but in actually many years before
with groups like the Buffalo Soldiers," said Ms. Anderson.
wore the uniforms of the Buffalo Soldiers and showed photographs.
History came alive via a lesson that was engaging, relevant to the
student’s interests, and appropriate to their age level. After the
lesson, the Buffalo Soldiers held a question-and-answer session, and two
students won Buffalo Soldiers t-shirts, which they wore with pride.
San Diego Chapter Buffalo Soldiers – 9th and 10th Cavalry Association
is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization that helps in educating the
public about the existence of the Buffalo Soldiers while preserving,
promoting and perpetuating the history, tradition and outstanding
contributions of the Buffalo Soldiers toward the development and defense
of the United States of America.
Located in the Emerald Hills
neighborhood, Johnson Elementary is a magnet school for students who
have curious minds and interests in the science, technology, engineering
and math (STEM). The STEM-focused education of the program prepares
students for further study in these areas and for careers in this highly
sought after career field.
For more information, contact principal Tracey Jenkins-Martin at 619-264-0103.