Homer Middle School student reports: Homer Huskies Get Into “Calling All Polar Bears”
Homer Middle School students were treated this week to a rap performance by Allison Atkootchkook Warden, titled “Calling All Polar Bears.” Allison is an Inupiaq artist who was sponsored by The Bunnell Street Arts Center to perform for our school. Dressed in a purple kuspuk and green cap, Allison began with rap songs she had written based on her experiences from her village.
Allison’s first song talked about the changes her mother had to face growing up in Kaktovik, Alaska and being sent to the lower 48 states to be treated for tuberculosis. In her next song, she rapped about the challenges of being a polar bear. Allison, wearing her polar bear fur mittens and paper mache polar bear head, got all the middle schoolers to sing along and wonder “where did all the ice go?” Allison even got some of the Homer Middle School students dancing with her next song about caribou herds. Spencer Warren and Kenny Cortez put on some antlers and showed off their moves, prancing and bopping alongside of Allison. Her two other songs were about our ancestors, community, and love. The whole gym swayed their arms in the air to show their unity and sense of community along with Allison’s lyrics.
I think the Homer Huskies definitely enjoyed Allison’s unique style of rapping, and we’d like to thank both Alllison Atkootchkook and the Bunnell Street Arts Center for a wonderful concert.
— Maggie Alston, seventh grade student, Homer Middle School