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Native American-Themed Assemblies Held at Dutch Broadway

            As part of Dutch Broadway School’s Diversity Initiative, two virtual assemblies were held in honor of Native American Heritage Month for both in-person and remote learners, on Dec. 16-17. The assemblies focused on the sport of lacrosse, which traces its origins to Native Americans.

Principal Cynthia Qasim kicked off the assemblies by sharing a video that depicted the history of lacrosse and how it has become a modern American game. She then welcomed surprise guest Mark Ellis, a short stick defensive midfield player on the New York Lizards lacrosse team, who joined in on the Zoom.

            Ellis, who grew up in Hempstead, explained to the students that lacrosse is often referred to as “The Creator’s Game” by Native Americans and Indigenous people. He discussed how Native people played the sport with hand-carved wooden sticks that were often given to them at a young age. Ellis also told the students about his own history, stating that he began playing in the eighth grade, which led him to play on both the Stony Brook University and Hofstra University lacrosse teams. Following his presentation, students were able to ask him questions.

            “This shows that if you follow your dreams, big things can truly happen,” Principal Qasim said at the closing of the assembly.


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