How does a field trip promote Civic Engagement? In the Civil War Washington Teacher Fellows program at Ford’s Theatre, we use places as primary sources to unlock the history right beneath our feet and make it come to life for teachers and students.
Washington, D.C., offers numerous opportunities to get out of the classroom and experience history, particularly when studying the Civil War. While Ford’s Theatre receives a large amount of attention, many other sites with engaging stories can be found around the city—in neighborhoods and places easily accessible to students that they may pass by on a daily basis.
Historic sites and museums provide a wide range of professional development opportunities for teachers, especially in the summer. What do educators really want to learn? And what makes a great learning experience? From 2016 to 2018, staff from Ford’s Theatre and researchers from George Washington University are partnering with the Institute of Museum and Library Services to find answers to these questions.
Summertime with Ford’s Education means welcoming our new Teachers-in-Residence. This year, we have the good fortune of working with not one, but two incredible educators! This year’s powerful duo will help us better understand teachers’ needs and steer us toward developing and implementing more useful resources and programs.
Reflecting on two summers spent in intensive, content-rich professional development through Ford’s Theatre—as a Civil War Washington Teacher Fellow in 2014 and as a Seat of War and Peace scholar in 2015—the biggest impact on my teaching has been getting to know the ordinary: the everyday objects, spaces and moments made the Civil War era extraordinary.