Back to:
Current year's news releases

All news releases
News and information home

'Learning by Doing' graduates share history projects with other teachers

RELEASED: Oct. 5, 2009

EAU CLAIRE — Several graduates of a University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire program designed to improve teachers' mastery of American history have created kits that other educators can use when teaching history in their classrooms.

The kits created by the graduates — all of whom teach history at western Wisconsin elementary and secondary schools — will be showcased at a ceremony at 3:30 p.m. Oct. 7 at the Chippewa Valley Museum.

The kits include a variety of materials that relate to the kit's topics, including things such as maps, photographs, tools, hats and other items that help bring history to life.

The kits were created by teachers who were earning graduate credits through UW-Eau Claire's "Learning by Doing: Public History in the Classroom" program, a multi-year effort involving hundreds of elementary and secondary school teachers. Supported by about $2 million in grants from the U.S. Department of Education, the program allowed teaches to earn 12-15 graduate credits at no cost to them.

"Our graduate program promoted hands-on history in the belief that for students and teachers alike, the best way to learn history is to do history," said Dr. John Mann, the associate professor of history who served as the program's director. "We had each teacher undertake a research project, much like a thesis but with a slightly different outcome. Their research projects became a centerpiece for a curricular unit they used in their own classrooms."

Several of the teachers then worked with UW-Eau Claire history faculty and professionals at the Chippewa Valley Museum to create the history kits based on their projects. The kits — available at the Chippewa Valley Museum, CESA 10 and CESA 11 — can be used by other teachers to enhance their curriculum, said Mann.

The kits touch on various eras and topics, including:

  • "The Civilian Conservation Corps: A New Deal for Young Men During the Depression," by Bill Dallas of Medford;
  • "Discovering Your Community: Guide to Community Research Methods," by Amy Lund of La Farge;
  • "Lumber Country: Industry and Community in Northern Wisconsin," by Lisa Sedlock of Chippewa Falls;
  • "Taking Action: The Environmental Movement in Late 20th Century Wisconsin," by Jon Dodge of Durand; and
  • History Detectives: Discovering Community History through Photos and Objects, by the late Tom Ropella of Menomonie (Ropella passed away unexpectedly just before graduating from the "Learning by Doing" program).

For more information, contact Mann at 715-836-5850 or mannjw@uwec.edu or Susan McLeod at 715-834-7871 or s.mcleod@cvmuseum.com.

-30-

JB/DW

Back to:
Current year's news releases

All news releases
News and information home

 

Excellence. Our Measure. Our Motto. Our Goal.