#BlackHistoryMonth: Hidden Figures Inspires Linden Girls

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Grade 6 students at the movie theatre.

Linden students in Grades 5-11 recently attended a film screening of Hidden Figures as part of their math, science, and history studies. Based on a true story, this film explores the story of Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughan, and Mary Jackson, a group of African-American women who were “calculators,” and provided data needed to launch NASA’s earliest missions. Viewing the film together served as the starting point for class discussions around important questions such as: How do we decide who is recognized in history? Why are some voices marginalized? How do STEM careers relate to space travel? Why are some groups of people under-represented in these fields?

Comments on the film by Linden students and faculty:

"Katherine Johnson was inspirational. She made the point that you don't have to be violent to get what you want, you just have to work hard and speak effectively." —Julia Glover, Grade 8

"For me, the highlight of the film was seeing Mary Jackson overcome the laws that prohibited her from going to engineering school." —Liv Warman, Grade 8

"This movie made me feel happy and empowered." —Juliana Eberschlag, Grade 8

"All the students who watched the film agreed that it is fantastic. It's a truly entertaining and inspirational real-life story that not only uncovers the accomplishments of women of colour in STEM, but also emphasizes the importance of perseverance, cooperation, and smashing down barriers. It's pretty rare to see a movie that makes equations as exciting as explosions, but this movie did it." —Beth Alexander, Linden Teacher

Comments by the Grade 10 and 11 French class:

par les Grade 10 et 11

Nous sommes allées voir le film "Hidden Figures". Nous avons beaucoup aimé le film. Le film se passe en Virginie en 1961 et 1962. C'est l'histoire de trois femmes qui sont mathématiciennes pour la NASA. Elles sont brillantes mais elles sont victimes de discrimination parce qu'elles sont noires. Tous les ingénieurs de la NASA sont des hommes blancs. Elles se battent pour leurs droits. Finalement, elles sont reconnues pour leur capacité. Mary devient ingénieur, Katherine fait les calculs pour le lancement de John Glenn, et Dorothy devient superviseure de la section IBM. Nous recommandons le film. C'est une histoire inspirante!

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