Barn Door to the Past
published on: 2/28/2003
Contributing Teacher(s): Marj Locker
Social Studies/MO History Grade Range: High School (9-12) Materials Needed:
Grade Range: High School (9-12)
- Goal 1.2 conduct research to answer questions and evaluate information and ideas
- Goal 2.1 plan and make written, oral and visual presentations for a variety of purposes and audiences
- Goal 4.6 identify tasks that require a coordinated effort and work with others to complete those tasks
- Social Studies 2. Continuity and change in the history of Missouri, the United States and the world
- Social Studies 7. The use of tools of social science inquiry (such as surveys, statistics, maps, documents)
Time Allowance: NA
Description: Missouri history activity uses barns,surveys and photos to trace history of a rural school district and create a local history book.
Classroom Component: Steps:
- Get a copy of your school district''s map which includes the names, locations and/or addresses for all of its members, from the superintendent. You may also want to attain the county-township map directory from your library, county court house or vocational teacher. Get an area phone book.
- Have students get on the internet and look up information about the history of barns. One address we found was: http://www.uvm.edu/~vhnet/hpres/publ/barnb/bbhbty.html
- Use the sources from number one to address envelopes to district patrons. As you do this, mark on your copies of the township maps which households you have sent surveys (see number 4) to by highlighting them. Make a list to check off who sent them back.
- Create a survey requesting information and send it to all of the members of the district. We found that we could save on postage by handing them out at ball games and other activities. We also tried sending them home with students, but many of them did not get delivered. It was better to mail them or hand deliver them. A copy of our survey is included. Remember to keep track of who got surveys on a master list.
- As you wait for the surveys to return, creat a log sheet for the photographers so that they can keep track of the buildigs they have photographed. Our version is enclosed. Keep it in the order that the pictures were taken so it is labeled correctly later.
- Upon receiving surveys create a file and begin to map the locations of the barns to be photographed.
- With the information found on the survey, write a story about each barn to be included with the picture in a local history book.
- If you can, photograph each barn with their owners. Wait for a sunny day and photograph on the sunny side. If the barn is old it may have wooden pegs instead of nails and materials quarried or cut from the farm it is on. Try to get a close up of these items as well. Many barns have interesting stories associated with them and make for entertaining reading and the owners love to tell these stories! We were able to go to the sites and take pictures during the class period (our students are juniors).
- When the pictures and captions are finished create a book to hold them. We got double prints so we could make two color books and can make unlimited copies upon request in black and white. Include a history of barns section in the introduction as well as a conclusion at the back of the book which summarized what was discovered in the research of the barns.
- Making the book:
Evaluation: Checklist (I like using a 1-5 scale)
- Use 11 X 17 paper, set up front and back like a book and staple in the middle with a long armed stapler.
- You can make the cover on cardboard out of interestingfabrics such as burlap or cordorary and sew edges with leather!
- Clear perspective on local history is shown and summarized.
- Correct identification of time/place.
- Book is neat, attractive and colorful.
- Responsible behavior when dealing with public, materials, and time management.
- Uses a variety of sources in research.
- Demonstrated teamwork in preparing project. SAMPLES STUDENT SURVEY Hi, we are (student name) and (student name), juniors from (name of school). Our Missouri History project is to trace local history through barns existing in the (name of school) School District. We would appreciate it if you would answer some questions for us about any barns on your property. If we are not present to get this survey please return it to the school or mail it to: (teacher name and address).
- When was your barn built?
- Is there a historical or entertaining story about your barn?
- What materials were used to construct your barn?
- Who built your barn?
- How has your barn been used?
- What families are associated with your barn?
- Please fill in the information below: NAME: ____________________________________ May we take pictures of your barn? Yes _________ No _________ What is the exact location of your barn? ___________________________________________________ Barn Picture Log