It was a small world after all at Liberty County High School’s Small World Festival.
The festival took place Thursday in the school’s gymnasium, where students showed appreciation for diverse cultures. The countries represented reflected the heritages of faculty and students.
Students also gave presentations on countries they have an interest in.
Twonzetta Samuel, LCHS English teacher, came up with the idea while teaching world literature to her students. Samuel thought the festival would be a good way for students to see how what they’re learning all connects together.
She said she wanted to create an opportunity for students to “step out of the classroom” and explore other cultures.
“I wanted us to highlight our different cultures, show that we can work together and that we’re all Liberty,” Samuel said.
Students wore traditional clothing and costumes associated with country, set up table displays and explained their country’s culture. Countries and cultures represented included Asia, China, Croatia, South Korea, Australia, Germany, Madagascar, Latin America, Native America, Guam and Peru.
Sophomore Logan Breningstall and three other classmates chose South Korea. Breningstall said he is one- uarter Korean and likes Korean traditions and especially enjoys the food.
Katie Leary, sophomore, is Scottish, Irish and “a bunch of European countries” she said. Leary chose to present on Australia because she once dreamed of living there and working in the outback.
Leary told how the Aboriginal people in the warm regions wear no clothing, the men wear belts made of their own hair and boomerangs are used in hunting to kill bats and birds.
Sophomores Ytalia Williams, Cameron Dasher and To’Mya Anderson were excited to talk about Guam. They said they didn’t know anything about the country or that Guam was a United States territory, but the culture caught their attention.
The students also mentioned Elizabeth Perez, a six-term Guam senator whose focus was on issues affecting the family.
Each student recommended Guam as good vacation spot and hoped to visit the country themselves one day.
Sophomore Schanen Walton stopped by the China and Asian countries table. Visitors who stopped by the table were asked to pick up uncooked rice with chopsticks.
The task was easy for Walton, who lived in Japan for three years because of the military. His mother taught him how to use chopsticks when he was younger.
LCHS Principal Stephanie Woods said she thought the festival was a “wonderful idea” and believed students will “take something away from the experience.”
One person who did was LCHS junior Tridib Basu.
Basu said the table on the Republic of Croatia stood out to him. He learned about a burial site being uncovered during a parking lot renovation.
“The festival, it’s pretty nice,” he said. “It’s a good takeaway from things we’re learning in school.”
Basu hopes Scandinavian countries and the United States will be represented at the next festival.
The festival also featured students dancing and playing instruments.
Some students also participated in Hinesville’s Small World Festival earlier in March at Bryant Commons.