Protest movements come to Canyon Hills


Students learn about patriotism and protest movements at CHHS.

Teacher Shanika McCarty teaches 11th grade students about protests and movements from history.

With the first semester ending in January at Canyon Hills High School, Mrs. McCarty enters the second semester by introducing the topic of movements around the world to her junior classes. McCarty, who teaches honors and regular American Literature, feels it’s important for students to learn about certain movements around the world and give her students an idea of how people could change the world. “I feel that it’s important to highlight these movements and examples of resistance to showcase how regular people changed the world. Most people who were a part of these different movements weren’t leaders’ or politicians. They just wanted to see positive change in society and decided to join protests and resist the status quo,” she said.

She also feels kids have the ability to speak up and make changes while being involved or not. “Yes, learning about these movements shows students that they have a voice and the ability to make the positive changes they want to see in their community. They show that you don’t have to be a politician to get involved in causes you care about. You can volunteer at an organization that already exists or start your own organization. Students will also learn about issues they may not have experience with but may want to become an ally, McCarty said.

Not only does McCarty have thoughts and feedback on issues around the world, junior Damien Faletufuga, student of Mrs. McCarty is engaged and is focused on learning about movements around the world. “I feel glad to be learning about these topics, especially from an African American teacher. It is a blessing to be able to learn about movements for change and progression in our world, and incredible to know that where we are now couldn’t have been made possible without generations of people fighting for equality,” said Faletufuga. He also states that this topic should be talked about to students to make a change in society, as he has been a witness to movements around the world. “I have personally connected with multiple topics taught in this class. Whether it was myself relating to a past event or finding something familiar that I have witnessed in the world around me, I will always appreciate what I’ve learned in this class.”

Junior Jaela Ashley Blandon also sees this topic as something that is important to be talked about and studied in school. She sees this as a topic that needs to be acknowledged and should be comfortable to bring up. “I think it really can. We are a young generation who are very strong, and point us in the right direction, especially if you have an amazing teacher like Mrs. McCarty can definitely reach out to students and open the minds of close minded kids. So yes, we can learn from this and definitely make a change and difference,” said Blandon. She feels that the current generation can make a big change, and also sees McCarty as a great example of helping students make a change.