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educateSPRING ISD- A project-based learning (PBL) challenge involving sixth-grade students at Dueitt Middle School culminated recently in a campus-wide day of honor and tribute event for four young girls killed in the 1963 Birmingham bombing: Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson, Denise McNair and Addie Mae Collins.

“In an effort to promote peace and racial tolerance, some humanities students were challenged during the month of February to develop a memorial display honoring the girls whose lives were tragically ended due to a racially motivated act of violence. This violent bombing at the 16th Street Baptist Church was a pivotal catalyst in igniting the civil rights movement,” said Leslie Jack, Dueitt teacher.

“The Watsons Go to Birmingham,” which inspired the PBL challenge and DMS Tribute Day, is a required sixth-grade reading assignment about a family that travels to Birmingham, Ala., in 1963. While the novel is fictional, it incorporates factual information surrounding the bombing.

Jack was at the center of designing the PBL and tribute event for her students. She said the participating students worked on the event for a period of three months before and after school.

“As we strive to embrace our differences campus-wide, it is our hope that this event will become a part of the Dueitt legacy for years to come,” Jack said.