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Dracut Teacher Wins Grant, Collaborates with Tsongas Industrial History Center on STARS Residency

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Date: June 10, 2011
Contact: Phil Lupsiewicz, 978-275-1705
Contact: Sheila Kirschbaum, 978-970-5083

Lowell, MA Lakeview (Dracut) Junior High School grade-8 teacher Rebecca Duda was one of a small number of Massachusetts educators to receive funding through the STARS program (Students and Teachers Working with Artists, Scientists, and Scholars).Ms. Duda chose the Tsongas Industrial History Center (TIHC), an educational partnership of Lowell National Historical Park and the UMass Lowell Graduate School of Education, as the scholars-in-residence to collaborate with her and three other teachers (Kimberly Ducharme, Sherilyn Georgoulis, and Kirk Monbleau) on a project that engaged all Lakeview eighth-graders in a close study of the Industrial Revolution, using Lowell as a case study.

LHJS teachers and TIHC staff together planned an extensive program that included both in-school and Park-based programs, each connected to one of Lakeview's core subject areas.At school, TIHC museum teachers presented interactive programs on labor history, the 1890 typhoid epidemic, and immigration, and students also used primary sources to investigate the life of mill girl Barilla Taylor.At the Center, students worked on assembly lines, "became" immigrants, wove cloth, built mill-and-canal systems, and invented mill vehicles.

The Massachusetts Cultural Council STARS Residencies Program provides grants of $500-$5,000 to schools to support creative learning residencies of three days or more in the arts, sciences, and humanities.

On Tuesday, June 21, 2011 from 4:30-6:00 p.m., LJHS students will unveil the product of their STARS residency: projects they completed using information they learned through the interactive programs.Student work will be exhibited on the fourth floor of the Boott Cotton Mills Museum from the exhibit opening on June 21 through the end of the school year.

All are invited to the opening reception on the 4th floor of the Boott Cotton Mills Museum (4:30 – 5:15 p.m.), followed by student presentations in the Boott Events Center (2nd floor, 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.).115 John Street, Lowell MA 01852 or call Sheila Kirschbaum at 978-970-5083 for more information.

Did You Know?

Mile of Mills, Lowell National Historical Park

The Boyden Observatory of Bloemfontein, South Africa owes its existence to Uriah Boyden who left over $200,000 at his death in 1879. Mr. Boyden, an inventor, patented an outward flow turbine. He sold it to the Appleton Mills in Lowell, MA where he worked, home of Lowell National Historical Park.