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WIU Faculty Lead Travel-Study Trip to the American South for Area Teachers

Jul 20, 2009

WIU Assistant Professor of History Dr. Barclay Key and WIU Professor Emeritus of History Dr. Larry Balsamo led a group of approximately 30 secondary school History teachers from the 21-county region surrounding Macomb on a travel-study trip through the American South in July. The trip, funded by the U.S. Department of Education's "Teaching American History" grant program, focused on enhancing the teachers' ability to teach their middle school and high school history students lessons focusing on the related themes of slavery, the Civil War, the Civil Rights movement, and southern culture.

The teachers left for Memphis, Tennessee on Monday, July 12, traveled throughout the Mississippi Delta region, and returned from New Orleans, Louisiana on Monday, July 20. During that week the teachers visited, among many other places of historic importance, the National Civil Rights Museum, the Civil War battlefields of Shiloh and Vicksburg, the Lafayette Acadian Cultural Center, New Orleans' St. Louis Cathedral, the Katrina Museum, and Destrehan Plantation. They also had the opportunity meet with civil rights activists.

After returning from the travel-study trip, each teacher will develop specific teaching strategies based on their trip experiences, to be shared with other teachers in the region, in the form of a DVD.

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