Archive for Wednesday, January 9, 2008

De Soto history teacher seeks items for use in classrooms

A newspaper proclaiming victory in World War I and dresses from past eras are some of the artifacts in Adrianne Lehrman's classroom at De Soto High School. Lehrman is borrowing an idea from fellow USD 232 teacher Keil Hileman of teaching through contact with historical objects.

A newspaper proclaiming victory in World War I and dresses from past eras are some of the artifacts in Adrianne Lehrman's classroom at De Soto High School. Lehrman is borrowing an idea from fellow USD 232 teacher Keil Hileman of teaching through contact with historical objects.

January 9, 2008

De Soto High School U.S. history teacher Adrianne Lehrman wants her students to have a hands-on approach to learning about the past.

That is why Lehrman is asking De Soto residents for their historical items.

"Instead of reading about a ration card, I would like a ration card to hand around to people," she said.

Lehrman said she got the idea from De Soto resident and Monticello Trails Middle School teacher Keil Hileman. In his museum connections exploratory course at Monticello Trails, students learn about different eras of the past with artifacts. His students learn about the Middle Ages, prehistoric man and the French and Indian War.

Since Lehrman's collection of items is still relatively small, she is going to borrow things from Hileman's collection of about 20,000 pieces.

Lehrman said she is looking for items like advertisements, campaign buttons, ration cards, comics, newspapers, letters, flapper dresses and old-fashioned radios. She also is interested in any items from World War I and World War II. So far, she has some old newspapers and journals, Civil War books, pots and pans from the 1950s and '60s, and she is waiting to get a flapper dress.

Lehrman has asked her students to find items and is offering extra credit for those who do. She also put an announcement in Principal Dave Morford's weekly newsletter.

Hileman said he didn't intend to start a 20,000-piece collection. It started from a woman's letter to him about some of her belongings.

"She said as long as I promise not to sell it and it is going to be used to teach with that, I could have it," Hileman said.

The best thing about a collection of artifacts is that students enjoy it, Hileman said.

"When they see that connection in history, that is priceless," Hileman said.

To donate items to the De Soto High School History Department, contact Adrianne Lehrman at alehrman@usd232.org or at 583-8370.

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