The Fletcher Academy took a break from their end-of-year studies for some lighthearted entertainment and learning at their first Arts/Culture Festival. I took a break from some never-ending emails to join in the fun.

The day began with a series of dance performances by students from the Haliwa-Saponi Tribal School, dressed in beautiful, colorful regalias. The dances were accompanied with short traditional stories with important lessons, including a woman who was turned into a woodpecker after repeatedly lying, teaching students to be honest and fair.

Untitled design   We have a beautiful culture. We pass our traditions down to our children.”                                                                                                          -Senora Lynch, Cultural Arts Teacher at Haliwa-Saponi Tribal School

After watching several performances, Fletcher Academy students were invited to join in the fun by performing in a group friendship dance with the Haliwa-Saponi students.

 

The day continued with workshops and activities to introduce Fletcher Academy students to new crafts, including a special opportunity to join the Haliwa-Saponi Blue Moon Drummers.

Untitled design   It’s cool to see different cultures… It’s bonding and fellowship time. It gives us a break and lets us spend time with people.”                    –Holly, Junior at Fletcher Academy

Haliwa-Saponi and Fletcher Academy have worked together and shared resources over the years, a relationship that began when former Fletcher Academy Headmaster Junell Blaylock came to Fletcher Academy after having worked at the Haliwa-Saponi school.

Untitled design   In many ways, I believe we are sister schools… We want to celebrate and perpetuate this relationship as long as we can.”                        -Paul Atkinson, Fletcher Academy Headmaster

All in all, it was a great day celebrating arts and culture with North Carolina friends and Fletcher family.

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