This video segment from EGG, the arts show describes the community of Sapelo Island located off the coast of Georgia. The original Gullah/Geechee people of Sapelo were enslaved there, but when slavery was abolished the land on the island was abandoned to the slaves. Sapelo Island's valuable land is now threatened as it is the only Gullah/Geechee island to successfully resist real estate development. Each year island residents hold a festival. In order to preserve and educate people outside Sapelo, they bring people to the island to teach them about Gullah/Geechee life and culture.
Learn more about the EGG: The Arts Show segment "Off the Charts."
The following Frame, Focus and Follow-up suggestions are best suited for elementary or middle school students using this video in an English language arts or social studies lesson. Be sure to modify the questions to meet your students' instructional needs.
What is Frame, Focus and Follow-up?
Frame (ELA) Have you ever attended a cultural festival? List some of the activities you took part in and the presentations you saw there.
Focus (ELA) Watch and list some of the ways the people of Sapelo celebrate their cultural day.
Follow Up (ELA) Plan a cultural day. What do you want the people who attend your cultural day to learn about you and your culture? Brainstorm ideas for exhibits, activities and presentations you would like to have. Make notes to organize the day, taking into consideration when these activities should happen. Publicize your ideas on a poster announcing the schedule for the day.
Frame (SS) What do you know about the Georgia Sea Islands? Why did slavery exist there? From where did the slaves originate?
Focus (SS) During the colonial and post-colonial period, the slaves of Sapelo Island or the Georgia Sea Islands developed their own distinct culture. While watching the video segment, think about what things or activities were important in the culture they established there.
Follow Up (SS) In the period prior to the Civil War, the ancestors of today's Gullah/Geechee people were slaves. Slaves were used to produce goods and services for the economy, but they could not own land or receive payment for their work. Discuss the reasons why it is important to their descendants today to protect and preserve Gullah/Geechee land and culture.
Social Studies, Communications, Graphic Art
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