Every year National History Day frames students’ research within a historical theme. The theme is chosen for the broad application to world, national or state history and its relevance to ancient history or to the more recent past. This year’s theme is “Debate & Diplomacy: Successes, Failures and Consequences”. The intentional selection of the theme for National History Day is to provide an opportunity for students to push past the antiquated view of history as mere facts and dates and drill down into historical content to develop perspective and understanding.
The NHD theme provides a focused way to increase student’s historical understanding by developing a lens to read history, an organizational structure that helps students place information in the correct context and finally, the ability to see connections over time.
This is the first time in a while that a Milford School has required that students participate in the History Day program. At the present time the project is a major grade in social studies for all 8th graders. It is a fantastic opportunity for students to develop research skills that will enhance their learning experiences for their future education. The whole process has been set up for the students to go from topic choosing to actual research skills, then applying their knowledge of the topic to a theme and finally into a project that can be an exhibit, a media presentation, a website, play or report. Much of the research has to be done on the students own time however, every Monday a computer lab has been available as well as history day examples and help throughout the semester.
There are 6 classes of students that have entered a project this semester and another 6 will enter next semester. On Jan. 8 tthere will be approximately 30 projects that will go to the building level competition. Some projects are individual and some are group presentations. At that time projects will be judged and chosen to go to the state competition in April. After being chosen the students are allowed to take the recommendations of the judges and enhance their projects.
The subject matter for the projects focus the students in the time period they are studying which isthe creation of the thirteen colonies to the civil war. Students also were given an opportunity to do other time periods with permission.
On Jan 8th the judging will take place from 12-2pm. The awards will be placed on the projects and will be on the projects during the open house from 3-7pm. There will be some monetary rewards but they are not confirmed at this point. Some of those rewards include: for the person or persons who followed the theme the best and one that follows historical skills the best; in honor of Roger Gorley a past Milford Middle School teacher. In the past there have been rewards for civil war history, women in history and military history from the Legates Family.