In honor of Veterans Day in November and of those who have served our country, today we had a history unit on Vietnam. A veteran of the Persian Gulf War, our history teacher Bob talked about events leading up to Vietnam and then showed a documentary, The Day the 60’s Died.
The film chronicles April 30, 1970, the day President Richard Nixon shocked the nation when he announced that U.S. troops were invading Cambodia. At college campuses across the country, masses of students took to the streets in protest. Five days later, four Kent State students would be shot dead by National Guardsmen. The mayhem that followed has been called the most divisive moment in American history since the Civil War.
Bob also brought in memorabilia such as military and training gear. We saw artifacts from Vietnam itself as we hosted the Traveling Trunk from the New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Foundation. The Trunk contains reproductions of documents and other authentic artifacts from the Vietnam War and the Vietnam era. The objects and documents for this trunk help explore answers to the essential question: How does war affect soldiers, families, and nations? Contents included original photographs, draft cards, dog tags, and CDs of oral history, which we hope to listen to in the next few weeks as the trunk resides at FlexSchool. The high school English students will continue exploration of this time period by watching Apocalypse Now after they finish reading Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness. Incidentally, students celebrated Halloween at FlexSchool today, too….see if you can find what our students dressed up as.
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