ORANGE, CA — May 26, 2015 — The Afterschool Education and Safety (ASES) Program and the Title VI Native American Education Program joined forces to present an educational event honoring Native Cultures and Ancestries this past Wednesday.
“The Heartbeat of a Nation is its People,” held at Yorba Middle School, was a cultural and educational experience showcasing the oral traditions, dance, and music of Native Americans found in California and throughout the United States.
Students, families, and staff looked on as Lupe Lopez and the “Red Boy Drummers” shared traditional dances and highlighted the rhythm of the drum, which was central to the lives of many Native Americans. As the performers danced, the audience was encouraged to reflect on the beauty of their own cultures and traditions. They were also reminded of the importance of respect and tolerance for cultures that differ from their own. Juaneno Tribe member Jacque “Tahuka” Nunez was on hand to share the oral tradition of story-telling, and participants also had the opportunity to create and design their very own Clapper Sticks, a customary rhythm instrument to accompany song and dance for most California tribes. The event concluded with a circle dance symbolizing the unity of the group as ONE people.
The Title VI Native American Educational Program offers academic support to eligible OUSD students in the form of tutoring, prep courses for tests such as the SAT and CAHSEE, cultural educational events, and scholarship information.
The ASES program offers students a high-quality afterschool program that includes homework assistance, enrichment in various content areas including music and art, and physical fitness.