Opportunity For Fourth-Graders To Experience History

High school students do a history program in the quartermaster’s house at Fort Scott National Historic Site.

The National Park Service cares for special places saved by the American people, so that all may experience our heritage, according to an NPS statement.

To help area children experience our heritage, Fort Scott National Historic Site administration personnel applied for and received a grant to help classroom students get  to the Fort.
The grant will pay  school transportation costs for area fourth-grade students to come for a hands-on experience in history.
“Students come primarily in the spring,” Barry Geersten, education program coordinator at the Fort, said. “But they could come now.”
Area high school government and history students help with re-enacting the history experiences for the fourth-graders, he said.
Fort Scott High School Teacher Josh Regan’s Advanced Placement History Class, Tami Campbell’s government class, along with Nevada High School teacher Jared Brown’s Advanced American History Class will be the instructors for the field trips, according to Geersten.

The following is a press release from the Fort about the opportunity:

“FSNHS  has received a field trip grant for the 2018-2019 school year from the National Park Foundation, the official nonprofit partner of the National Park Service.

This $5,000 grant will reimburse the costs of transportation for fourth-grade class field trips to this national park.

This grant is part of the Foundation’s Open OutDoors for Kids program which creates pathways for kids to explore and connect with national park experiences, and is administered locally by the Friends of Fort Scott National Historic Site.

“We are excited to be able to assist school groups in coming to Fort Scott National Historic Site,” said Betty Boyko, Superintendent, FOSC. “We understand that not all schools can afford to visit even though we do not charge a fee. This grant will help reduce barriers to bringing students to have fun while learning and developing a lifelong connection to our nation’s history,” Boyko continued.

“We are pleased to be involved in helping more of the areas school children build deeper connections with Fort Scott NHS and our history,” said Reed Hartford, President of the Friends of Fort Scott National Historic Site, Inc.

During their time on site, the students will participate in either the “Life on the Frontier” program for grades K-4 or the “Sweep through History” program for grades 4-8.

In “Life on the Frontier,” local high school students train to be the instructors and mentors to the K-4th-grade students. They dress in period clothing and are stationed at various locations around the site focusing on various aspects of life at Fort Scott during the 1840’s.

“Sweep through History” will acquaint 4-8th-grade students with life at Fort Scott during the three most significant periods in the site’s history: Westward Expansion, Bleeding Kansas and the Civil War.

Educators, dressed in period clothing, are stationed at various locations around the site focusing on life at Fort Scott during one of these periods. Both programs have pre-visit and post-visit activities and all are aligned with Kansas and Missouri content standards.

“Trekking along trails, observing our natural ecosystems and engaging with our shared history are experiences that benefit all children,” said National Park Foundation President Will Shafroth. “Making it possible for America’s youth to explore our national parks is an investment in their future and the future of the national parks community.”

Teachers and school administrators can request additional information about transportation grants and curriculum-based field trip programs by visiting the education section of the park’s website (www.nps.gov/fosc) or contacting the education program coordinator, Barry Geertsen, at 620-223-0310 or e-mail us.

For the full list of grantees and their projects, click here.”


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