Tiny Historians

This is a project about history, storytelling, audience, and tone.  It’s also about narrators.   In this project we ask our students to look at an event in history, study it themselves, and then teach the story to a child.  Our students create an illustrated book for their child narrator, help them understand the story, and then film the child explaining it all.  At that point, the work of organizing, planning and executing historical re-enactments starts.  While all of this is going on, we spend a lot of time discussing the nature of history and storytelling, the importance of historical accuracy, and the need for modern understandings of our past.  Reading The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, a story that deals with the very serious issues of slavery, but is presented as though it is a chid’s story, helped us make sense of all this, as did our study of US History from Colonial period through the Civil War.