Battle Banzai: Poppin' through the Decades on Main is coming to Battle Academy Nov. 3 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
For the fourth year in a row, the Southside school's students and staff are working to attract people of all ages to the artistic event. The event is a fundraiser for Battle Academy's field study experiences, consumable materials, arts education and technology.
"Banzai is a Japanese word or term loosely defined as a cry of determination," said Battle Academy technology, magnet & arts integration facilitator Scott Rosenow. "We chose this name for our fall festival three years ago because we are determined as a staff and community to guide our students to academic success and support their growth as contributing members of the Southside community. The festival draws the school and the community surrounding it closer together."
He said this year the festival celebrates 10 years of learning at Battle Academy.
"We have always endeavored with our annual festival to embed learning opportunities within a day of fun, food and family time," said Rosenow. "This year we are reliving different aspects of popular culture from the 1930s to the 1980s."
He said students and guests will experience the music, games, dress and events that occurred within each decade as a group through "factivities." Every grade level chose a different decade to explore.
Even the inflatables will tie in with the decades as children jump through space, battle a wrecking ball and enjoy Twister with a bounce. Inside the festival's related arts tent students, their parents and friends can view iconic art and classic cartoons while eating popcorn. Visitors will also be introduced to dance steps while inside the tent.
Live music will be provided by the John Truitt Band, DJ Flux 308 and the Battle Academy Chorus. A silent auction and artist vendors will also be featured.
On-site food vendors for the day include Big River Grille, Lupi's, Moss Place, Rita's Italian Ice, Southern Burger Co. and Sticky Fingers.
Much like the activities and food to be showcased, the urban school is a mishmash of cultures.
"We are at a 40/60 split; 40 percent of the students are magnet and 60 percent are zoned," said Rosenow. "Some of our students live in a nearby hotel, some live in Patten Towers, some live in Jefferson Heights and some live on Main Street.
"We are a Title 1 school. Sixty-eight percent of our students qualify for free or reduced lunches."
Despite adversity, the students are excelling in the classroom due to an artistic learning environment that revolves around Howard Gardner's Theory of Multiple Intelligences, he added. According to the philosophy, every human being possesses eight intelligences: linguistic, logic-mathematical, musical, spatial, bodily/kinesthetic, interpersonal, intrapersonal and naturalistic, explained Rosenow. Teachers at Battle Academy use Gardner's method to teach students in a fun way in the classroom, he said.