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|Project Title: ||Veteran Recognition|
|School Year: ||2006|
|School - District:||Acton-Boxborough Reg High - Acton-Boxborough|
|Contact Name:||Maria Anthony|
|Content-Area(s):||English Language Arts|
|Community Need:||Veteran’s Affairs|
|Brief Description of SL Project: |
Students listened to veterans from WWII, Vietnam, and Afghanistan, took oral histories, took photos, filmed the sessions, and started compiling histories for each veteran. Students worked together to compile a book of histories, to create an exhibit of photographic and artistic representations of their experiences and to start a documentary film. Students will present the histories to the veterans at a ceremony around Veterans' Day and will present the histories to the town and school libraries.
|The Community Need the Project is Meeting:|
Students were addressing the lack of historical documentation of the veterans' stories and the lack of recognition for the service the veterans provided. The need was discovered when studying the Anglo-Saxon epic poem Beowulf, and students did not have a concept of a warrior society. We decided to invite veterans in to tell their stories.
|Service Component: |
The students wrote the histories, started film and photography projects, and educated themselves about what it means to be a modern-day soldier. Each student (approximately 55) worked a minimum of 12 hours and some worked 20 or more hours. Students will volunteer to continue the project in the next academic year, even though they will have moved on from this class.
|Connections with Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks: |
English language Arts
Language Strands 1: Discussion; 2: Questioning, listening and Contributing
Reading and Literature 9: Making Connections; 11: Theme; 16: Traditional Narrative
Composition 19: Writing; 20: Consideration of Audience and Purpose; 21: Revising; 22: Standard English Conventions; 23: Organizing Ideas in Writing; 27: Media Production
|How Youth Voice Helps Shape Project:|
Students were able to voice their concern over the lack of veteran recognition in their community. With this they organization their thoughts for interviewing and documenting the veterans' stories and the lack of recognition for the service the veterans provided. Students felt empowered to address this communty need.
|Student Reflection Component: |
Students wrote to the veterans after their visits in the classrooms. Excerpts include, "Your willingness to come speak to us about your experiences gave us a chance to learn about a war at a level that the media cannot capture" and "your story has a significance in it that is far greater than any story a student takes from a text book." Also, "there is no replacement for hearing a first-hand account of a story…only a person can make a story real."
|Community Partners Involved: |
Students, veterans from WWII, Vietnam, and Afghanistan
|Demonstration/Celebration of Students' Work: |
Celebration will occur around Veterans' Day in the fall of 2006, culminating in the presentation of the histories to the veterans and to the libraries.
|Evaluation of Project's Impact:|
Students, in their year-end course evaluation, commented that the project held special meaning for them and that they learned a new perspective about serving in the military, serving the country, and serving the community. iFurther measurement of this project’s impact might include surveys or student-led discussions of those people attending the Veterans’ Day ceremony and those attending the presentations at the town and school libraries.
|Challenges/Solutions Identified by District:|
Incorporating the CSL curriculum into the standard honors curriculum produced very tight schedules; completing the CSL project took away from the curriculum that is required to teach, so time in the classroom became precious, and the project had to be extended to another year to make a substantial final project.
* NOTE: This project summary was written by the district/community. Any text in italics was added or modified by the Department (ESE). Most of these projects were supported with Learn & Serve America funds distributed through the ESE.