Battlefield Partners with Local High School
Contact: Gib Backlund, 615-893-9501
Contact: John McKay, 615-893-9501
Stones River National Battlefield worked with a local high school to produce short, interpretive films for its website. Located in Nashville, Tennessee, McGavock Comprehensive High School is the largest public high school in Tennessee and has a diverse student population. The battlefield partnered with McGavock High School's Academy of Digital Design and Communication, co-developing an integrated, multi-disciplinary curriculum with the stories associated with Stones River National Battlefield as a central theme in the curriculum. Students were provided with "real" opportunities to work with a "client" in a video production project, producing short interpretive films for the park to use on its website.
For the second year in a row, eleventh-grade students from the school worked with park rangers to research, develop, and produce their videos about the park. Field trips to the park provided the students the opportunity to capture the footage for their videos while allowing the students to experience the place they had been learning about in their research. They interviewed rangers and filmed sites around the battlefield during their field trip.
"What better way to make history relevant to teenagers than to have teenagers research and present the history in a way they understand," said McGavock's broadcasting teacher Barclay Randall. Students enjoyed visiting the battlefield and expressed their appreciation for the project. One student commented, "This partnership and the opportunities it has brought have been the highlight of my year." Another student said, "Thank you for letting us come and experience an unforgettable and truly inspiring place of history and adventure. You guys rule!"
In 2012, the park is expanding its partnership by sponsoring a student internship to create a virtual battlefield tour for teens and hosting a number of students for a day of shadowing park employees to discover the the career opprotunities in the National Park Service
Visit the park's website for more information on the project.