Abrupt end

June 22, 2011

News reports say Sarah Palin quit her bus tour of America less than halfway through.

Sarah Palin's custom-painted bus, parked

Sarah Palin's custom-painted bus, parked -- is this abandoned parking lot the last stop?

That’s rather unusual, don’t you think?  Our Band of Merry History Teachers stuck to our bus tour last week until the bus wore out.  I’d expect Palin to keep it up so long as the air conditioning held out.

No, I’m not running.  I may be better prepared than some of the candidates, but I have a job to do, and I can’t speak Mandarin.

Ed Darrell practices with a teleprompter, to avoid writing on his hand.

Ed Darrell wrestling with the Presidential Seal and a balky teleprompter.

Civil War Sesquicentennial: 26 free books on the Civil War

June 22, 2011

Our librarian friend, Judy Crook, sent a link to the National Park Service website where you can download, free, 26 books on the Civil War.

150th Anniversary Civil War

Logo for 150th Anniversary Civil War - Copyright ©2010 Eastern National. All rights reserved.

Eastern National is celebrating the 150th Anniversary of the Civil War with electronic editions of eParks’ National Park Civil War Series of books. Read them online or own your own paper edition by visiting our Civil War Series store.

With a color printer, a teacher could assemble 26 readers for use in the classroom, or for homework assignments.  The books sell for $8.95 through the NPS bookstore.  The first listed volume, A Concise History of the Civil War, provides a good, brief summary, with some features in the .pdf version teachers should be happy to find:  A list of 25 battles of significance, and black-and-white maps of battle locations and the Confederacy, for examples.

Great idea to make this stuff available for free, online.  I wonder, how many people will really take advantage of the opportunity?

Buy paper copies here, at the eParks Store; here are links to the .pdfs of the 26 volumes, below:

book cover

Cover for A Concise History of THE CIVIL WAR

Schieffer: Education is our first line of defense – CBS News Video

June 22, 2011

Bob Schieffer plugs education and worries about last week’s NAEP report on what students know about history:

Schieffer is right:  Teachers deserve better pay, and that’s probably the quickest and best solution to get our kids up to snuff on history.

And history is our first line of defense.  Minutemen at Lexington and Concord knew why they were fighting, and fought to victory as a result.  Don’t our kids deserve as good an education today?

[I’m posting this on Wednesday — the YouTube version had only 54 views when I did.  Spread the word, will you?]

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