Fourth graders dig up history in their classroom closet

by ParentCo. May 29, 2015

At the Children's Workshop School in New York City's East Village, a fourth grade classroom's closet has been turned into an archeological dig site. Inspired by a book his class had read about a migrant farm worker who found old coins in a field, one of the students, 10 year old Bobby Scotto began looking for treasures of his own. Starting with the gaps in the closet's floorboards. His first efforts unearthed wheat pennies (which haven't been minted since 1958), a buffalo nickel, and decades old candy wrappers. It wasn't long before he and his best friend implemented a few simple tools and the rest of the students caught on. The classroom teacher, Miriam Sicherman, rather than shutting it down, saw in their excitement an opportunity for learning.
And so began an improbable exercise in hands-on archaeology that soon attracted all 21 students in the class. “There’s something about the degree of difficulty that’s just perfect,” said the class’s teacher, Miriam Sicherman, 43, who has been teaching at the school for 15 years. “You can’t just reach in and grab something, but it is possible to get something. There’s just enough gratification.”
Since the start of the project, the students have found dozens of pieces of ephemera which they've connected with lessons in history, research, preservation, and documentation. See the gallery of treasures on their instagram account. Read the full article on the New York Times: Young Treasure Hunters Dig Up History Lessons in a Classroom’s Closet - NYTimes.com


ParentCo.

Author



Also in Conversations

aerial view family members sweeping the road
No, Really, Your Kids Need to Do Chores

by Mark Oliver

As a member of the household, and in the interest of building skills that they'll need for a lifetime, your kids should be doing chores. Here's the case for why.

Continue Reading

baby playing
5 Things to Know about Baby’s First Steps

by Hannah Howard

For your little one, walking means entering a whole new stage of life, where the world is their oyster. Here’s what to know as your little one learns to walk.

Continue Reading

girl with flower
7 Mess-free Ways to Teach your Child about the Environment

by Maria Dontas

If you’re a busy parent looking for easy, dirt-free ways to celebrate our Earth with your child all year long, here are 7 fun, simple ideas to try with your family.

Continue Reading