Colonial History in the Classroom
December 16, 2009, 05:24 AM
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My son David is in the fifth-grade and is taking an American history class. I´m obviously interested in the subject matter and how the class is taught. The fifth-graders just completed a study of the 13 colonies.

I looked over his textbook, and though I wouldn`t have written it exactly the same way, it was pretty well-done. It did mention the Lost Colony, though it didn`t make mention of Virginia Dare.

David`s teacher is a believer in the importance of the colonial era in American history, which is good. She even got to go to Virginia on some sort of teachers` trip, where she visited Williamsburg and Jamestown.

At the end of the colonial section, the teacher had the students give individual presentations related to colonial history. One option was to impersonate a colonial American. So David impersonated Isaac Wall, my great-great-great-great-great-great grandfather (and thus David`s great-great-great-great-great-great-great grandfather) who lived in Virginia in the early 1700s. David wore a period costume, discussed agricultural techniques of the era with the aid of a plowshare and sickle, and pointed out that Isaac Wall was the ancestor of contemporary 5th-grader David Wall. My wife, who attended, said David did well on his presentation, and I was glad to hear that.