Black History Month playground celebration brings faculty and students together to play double dutch


Jazmin Aguayo

English Professor, Damon Cagnolatti (jumping rope) participates in the Playground celebration Back to the School Yard: Let’s Double Dutch. Where a double dutch tutorial takes place at Falcon square amphitheater on February 6, as part of the school’s Black History Month celebration.

Jazmin Taha, Co-Sports Editor

The Playground celebration “Back to the School Yard: Let’s Double Dutch!” offered a double dutch tutorial at Falcon Square Amphitheater on Feb. 6 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., as part of the school’s Black History Month celebration.

Cerritos College kicked off the month with many Black History celebration events scheduled throughout the days of February.

Double Dutch was established during WWII in the streets of New York by the black community. It spread quickly all across the United States and became a staple in the African-American community.

Many faculty members attended the event and showed off their double dutch skills. English Professor, Damon Cagnolatti, wowed the crowd with his jumping skills.

“Double Dutch is actually my favorite childhood pastime,” Cagnolatti said.”Double dutch was like right there, it was always something that was like kind of a staple in the neighborhood that I grew up in.”

Double dutch was right alongside playing basketball, stickball, flag football and two-hand touch, Cagnolatti added.

“It’s just a time for us to not only reminisce [but] remember, especially given the context of the moment that we’re living in, just last year right we lost Nipsey Hussle we lost Toni Morrison and we lost Kobe Bryant just last week,” he said.

“You know this is a past time that actually helps to bring folks together and take a little bit of a momentary pause from whatever reality looks like.”

While students and faculty both jumped double dutch, the participants sang a nursery rhyme “Jack be nimble, Jack be quick, Jack jumped over the candlestick..” a famous double dutch jump rope song.

A jumper would jump while the song is being sung and, depending on how well the jumper is, the nursery rhyme will be completed and followed by another song until the jumper misses.

Future student, Jade Jackson, also participated in the event. While checking out all the things Cerritos College has to offer, she saw a flyer promoting the double dutch event and decided to check it out.

“I think they are doing a really good job celebrating Black History Month on campus and I’m definitely planning on going to the other events they are hosting,” Jackson said.

The school had plenty of water to keep jumpers and other students and attendees hydrated while working out in the heat. They also offered lots of ice cream truck candy for students and faculty to snack on.

Austin Freeman, film and photography major, expressed how events like these show that teachers care about students on a more personal level.

The double dutch event was off to a slow start, but once students saw more teachers and faculty members participating, they slowly trailed in and began to participate in the event, letting loose and jumping side-by-side with their teachers and mentors.

“It’s great, the interaction shows that the teachers care and they go out of their way to bring everybody together,” Freeman said.

“They [Cerritos College] do their part to celebrate [Black History Month] by bringing different groups to campus and having all these events.”