Multicultural Approach

Sydelle Pearl presents a multicultural and multidisciplinary approach in her author/storyteller residencies, always striving to expose students to the stories from around the world. The seed for this philosophy was planted in 2004 and is described below.

Marian Anderson in the Classroom: The Power of Multicultural Storytelling

As a storyteller at two Boston schools, Sydelle was profoundly affected by a first grade teacher’s words, “These children need stories about African-Americans.” Sydelle demonstrates how she incorporated the life story of Mathew Alexander Henson and then Marian Anderson—both famous African-Americans who traveled around the world—Mathew as an explorer and Marian as a singer. Sydelle’s storytelling model includes multicultural folktales, geography, writing, art, movement, singing, and books in other languages. Sydelle also describes how she used this model at a school in Pittsburgh. Please note that Sydelle can implement this model using the life stories of people that mirror the ethnic background of the students in order to be particularly relevant.

Click here to view Sydelle’s article, “Around the World with Marian Anderson: The Power and Magic of Multicultural Storytelling” in the Spring 2012 issue of the PCSS Journal, page 73. PCSS refers to the Pennsylvania Council on the Social Studies.


Sydelle with second grade children and a map featuring the explorer
Matthew Alexander Henson.


A map filled with photographs of the singer Marian Anderson and her travels.

For examples of artwork and writing by children, please see the Matthew Henson and Marian Anderson thank you section under “Testimonials.”