American Studies 2014 Presentation of the UGRR in the Suffield Area

Here are the slides from tonight’s presentation. Thank you everyone for coming out and being a great audience. The class appreciated your questions and conversation afterward.

I was hoping to keep a project-based learning journal because other teachers often asked me how to facilitate such a large, authentic task, but the peaks and valleys of productivity were so consuming, fun, and exhilarating that I was unable to do so. Also added into our task was the academic “mess” of doing history! See also: Doing History: http://www.amazon.com/Doing-History-Investigating-Children-Elementary/dp/0415873010

There were many moments last night when I looked down the front row and wanted to be that proud parent with flash photography, but I stopped because the focus of each student was on his or her classmate presenting in the moment. The good news is that I have that image of the engaged class etched in my mind’s eye, and it’s a testament to #PBL learning that the process allows a teacher to work with your students in an authentic and meaningful environment that also fosters such pride.

We were honored to have Cliff McCarthy, Archivist, from the Wood Museum of Springfield History. We’re also honored that he wants us to write a piece for his great blog on Freedom Stories in teh Pioneer Valley. Henry Foster’s story of courage and resilience will be a great complement to that site. http://freedomstoriespv.wordpress.com

We’ll also start work on writing the application for Foster’s site in Hartford. We thank everyone who helped us along the way for their support for tonight’s great program.

About Bill Sullivan

I am an English teacher working with great students at Suffield Academy. I also teach seniors in various project-based learning environments. Some of the #PBL topics included global issues, such as Pandemics, Climate Change, and Water; more recently I have asked students to research and identify topics important to our school community and their generation. We curate these topics with a #StudentCenteredPBL. For the past eleven years, I also created a driving question for a class to research a local history mystery and present their findings in a community program partnering with our local historical society. These topics encompass researching the lives of enslaved individuals who were contributors to the foundation of our community.
This entry was posted in 21st Century Learning, American Studies, Local History, Project Based Learning, Public History. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to American Studies 2014 Presentation of the UGRR in the Suffield Area

  1. Pingback: A Consideration for Adding Henry Foster’s Residence as an UGRR Site on the Connecticut Freedom Trail | Mr. Sullivan's Digital Classroom

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