PAST EVENT: LaSalle-Backus Education Center’s 6th Graders Visited the Embassy

Publicated on: June 12, 2012

To conclude Embassy Adoption Program, La Salle Backus Education Center’s 6th graders visited the Hungarian Embassy on June 7, 2012.

In September 2011 the Embassy of Hungary in Washington, D.C. partnered with LaSalle-Backus Education Center for the Embassy Adoption Program 2011-2012 (EAP), a joint project of D.C. Public Schools, the Washington Performing Arts Society and several Embassies.

In the framework of this program LaSalle-Backus Education Center’s 6th graders visited the Hungarian Embassy on June 7, 2012. Their trip was the conclusion of a series of visits by Hungarian diplomats to LaSalle-Backus. The mission of the EAP is to provide D.C. students a greater understanding of the world and foreign countries through the involvement of many embassies in the educational process.

Ambassador György Szapáry greeted the students with a short speech, who also earned second place in the D.C. Public School Science Class competition this year. A few short videos about Hungary were screened.

In a presentation, the students showed what they have learned about Hungary throughout the semester: about its geography, its 1000-year history from the foundation of Hungary in the late 9th century until the Third Hungarian Republic from 1989, and about its natural treasures, cultural heritage and unique language.

The students also came prepared with a little surprise: they performed the Hungarian poem “Black Land” (Fekete Ország) by Mihály Babits, one of the most significant personalities of Hungarian literature in the early 20th century. The poem, which expresses how someone sees their whole world as being black, was translated from Hungarian into English:

“I dreamt of a black land

Where everything was black

All black, but not just outside

To the bone, to the marrow black

Black Black, black, black

Black sky and black sea

Black trees and black house

Black animals, black person

Black pleasure, black pain

Black ore and black rock

Black earth and black trees

Black, black, black world”

After the performance the students had the opportunity to spend some time at the Embassy and learn about a diplomat’s life and - and also to taste some Hungarian specialties. The Embassy is grateful to the class teacher, Mr. William McGrath, for his continuous assistance and the wonderful job he has done with the kids.

see photos in the Gallery