Getting to know my downtown in the 3rd grade : a local history handbook for use in the Youngstown City Schools
My creative project is the construction of a local history handbook to be used by third grade teachers in the Youngstown City Schools to teach their students the history of Youngstown as a part of their social studies curriculum. The local history handbook that I have constructed has two main parts; a teacher's edition and a student's edition. The teacher's edition is detailed history of Youngstown, written to an adult level of comprehension, and is meant to prepare the teacher with the information needed to answer students' questions. The student's edition is based on the teacher's edition. The student's edition is written to a student's level of understanding and is highlighted with numerous images and activities to further the students' learning of the subject matter.The local history handbook is one component of a larger program, Getting to Know my Downtown in the 3rd Grade, aimed at teaching local third graders the history of their town. Other parts of the program include local history experts and local government leaders coming to speak with the students; traveling activity resource packets; a three — dimensional, interactive map of the downtown; and a culminating field trip to the downtown where students visit many locations important to local history and government. One objective of this project is to establish and strengthen the students' "pride of place" and to prepare them to be better stewards of their local history and built environment in the future. A second objective is to give students a better understanding of how local government operates and the numerous ways for them to make a positive impact on their community.