AME brings families together for a night of fun


Sydney Foster

AME Student Coordinator Sarah Sharp reads to kids at the event on October 8th, 2015 at MCTC in Minneapolis, MN. Photo by Brady O’Neel/ City College News

Coming together in one place to eat food and read a book is a special way for student with smaller children to connect. Jay Williams, coordinator of the African American Education Empowerment program came up with a very impressive idea and brought it to the members of the AME. One of the AME members, Imani McCray, liked the ideal and brought it to Williams who backed it. On Oct. 8 the AME brought together for the first time ever: family literacy night.

The night started out with food that was provided by the school cafeteria. While eating, many of the AME members talked to the families that were there, and welcomed them to their event. When everyone was done eating Connie Rhodes and Sarah Sharp had everyone participate in an ice-breaker game to get the night started.After the ice-breaker was done the children, Sharp and McCray all sat around in a circle to read a book. “It was amazing on how excited the kids got about reading a book to each other,” said McCray. McCray and Sharp both read books to the kids while showing them the pictures inside. The kids were having a great time laughing and imitating the characters in the books.

When choosing the books to read for the literacy night they have to consist of the following: written by an African American author, it has to consist of critical thinking and it has to be appropriate to all ages. When McCray was asked about what he thought could change for the literacy night, he said, “We have to take account for the children’s point of view rather than our own,” he said, “we provided pizza and doughnuts to make the kids happy for the night so that they could have a great time.”

After the conclusion of the event the members of the AME and the families got together and talked about what they were gonna do next. They had a group photo taken as a remembrance of the night that they were part of the very first AME family literacy night.

The AME wants to try and make the literacy night happen once a month to get families together for a night of fun. The next literacy night will be about Martin Luther King.

“We are excited about continuing to run these nights,” said McCray. While preparing for their next event the AME are hoping that it will be as great as the first one.