Thursday, November 19, 2015

Veterans Experience

On Wednesday, November 18, thirty-six 8th grade students traveled to the Heinz History Center for the annual Veterans Experience Workshop.  

These students spent the school day with local veterans who shared their personal stories of service in our nation’s military.  Students earned eligibility for this field trip by completing an essay and creating questions for the veterans.  

While at the History Center, students first toured the “World War II – We Can Do It!” exhibit with local Vietnam War veterans and History Center volunteers Larry Woods and Jack Sheehan.  

Later, students rotated through four stations, each featuring a veteran from a different war.  Students listened to first-hand testimonials, examined primary source artifacts, and asked questions to veterans from World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War.  Each student left the experience with detailed notes about the lives and stories of the veterans.  Students are encouraged to share these testimonials in print, online, or with family and friends.

In addition, the students participated in a panel discussion with all of the veterans where they discussed topics such as following orders in the military, the difficulty in returning home after combat, changes in communication technology, and their favorite memory from their time overseas.  Students took detailed notes from all of the veterans’ stories and were encouraged to share them with others in the future.  

Thanks again to veterans Walter Patton (World War II), Dave Borland (Korea), Gordon Lam (Vietnam), and Cynthia Davis (Vietnam) for spending the day with our students.