Dr. G's Ranger Round Up: History Club

"History of the Roman Empire'

May 26

The last Lakewood High School History Club presentation was a microcosm of our entire year. Today, it was sophomore Edie Barcelona who delivered a well researched, highly engaging presentation-- on Asian American and Pacific Islander contributions to American Medicine. Like all of our presentations, this was initiated and created by a student (or students). Edie explored not only the contributions, but also the challenges and historical obstacles faced by Asian American Pacific Islanders in the USA. It was inspiring and highly informative.   Afterwards, we had our planning meeting in which we reviewed this year, announced next year's leaders, and discussed plans for future presentations and field trips. We had a great year, with presentations ranging from the serious (Ukraine) to the humorous (Cats vs Dogs). Our field trip to the Mennonite Museum in Berlin (along with lunch at the Amish Door) was highly educational and a lot of fun (isn't that the formula?)   Teaching at Lakewood High School is a dream come true, a final confirmation that I won the life lottery. On this grim day, I want to thank all those students who attended our events, and of course those students who gave fabulous presentations: Emma Hart (Headed to OSU--Pictured from her freshman year when she volunteered at the actives fair); Joshua Mika,, Audrey Carson, Rodshi Rahman, Meg Winters, Leah Campbell, Edie Barcelona, Zoey Serna, Anna Maurer, Eva Wischhusen, Finley Thompson, Beckett Broadwater, Lauren Lange and Stella Rosen. Great things planned for next year. Long Live Lakewood.

May 16: "History and Culture of the Roman Empire"

Kudos and thanks to Beckett Broadwater, freshman Lakewood High School History Club member, for his well-researched and highly engaging presentation on myriad elements of the History and Culture of the Roman Empire. Beckett treated the audience to research on everything from political structure to the rather bizarre Roman feasting rituals….and to delicious chocolate chip cookies baked by his mother. The Roman's were advanced technologically, having strong water/sanitation systems—advances that took a downturn in the dark ages of Medieval Europe. Of course, Beckett reminded us that Latin is the root of English and many modern languages.

As always, our students showed strong interest and had great questions. This is our penultimate presentation for this year, but we are already conjuring some great ideas for 22-23. The variety and depth has been impressive, as has the engagement of our students. I have learned a lot from our intellectually curious, hard working students. Long Live Lakewood.

May 9: "Journey To Peru"

Today, Lakewood High School History Club freshman Lauren Lange took 25 plus students and teachers on a "Journey to Peru", delivering a riveting slide show/talk on Peruvian history and culture. Lauren has been to Peru 15 times (her mother's side of the family is from Peru) and brought a unique, personal perspective to the presentation. She discussed everything from the Incan empire and the brutal Spanish colonization policies/practices to the present social/political landscape of Peru. We learned about Peru's under publicized culinary prowess, along with the ways their schools are structured. We learned about Quechua history and their current status. Our students asked good questions, and were engaged throughout.

Lauren and her mom also made cookies and an authentic Peruvian dessert for a very appreciative audience. Her extensive knowledge of Peru's history and culture was matched by her passion for it. Her mom attended, along with her grandparents and aunt, who are visiting from Peru. Their presence and warmth made for a truly special event. The LHS History Club has been truly fortunate to have students come forth with great ideas and fabulous presentations—it is great to work with these students! The vision of our first President and Founder Alex Manaa (LHS '18), who will graduate from Northwestern in 2 weeks, has been fulfilled with purpose and power by current Co-Presidents Emma Hart, Joshua Mika and all those students that give great and thoughtful effort to their presentations. What a great day in C314 at the corner of Bunts and Franklin. Long Live Lakewood.

May 3: "Sharks And Whales"
Kudos to Eva Wischhusen and Anna Maurer for their Lakewood High School History Club presentation on sharks and whales. They taught us so much and debunked quite a few myths via impressive research and a fabulous presentation. Eva talked about the "Jaws Effect"—how the film created gross misconceptions about sharks, leading to the killing of thousands. The role of sharks and whales in our ecosystem is complex and quite vital—a point that they underscored throughout the presentation. Anna also drew an interesting parallel between "Jaws" and "Moby Dick" in terms of their impact on public perceptions ("Jaws" was intended as fiction but taken by many as fact, and Moby Dick aspired to explore the danger of an all-consuming obsession but is often remembered as a commentary on "deadly whales"). For better and usually worse, popular culture influences our society.

It was so great being the learner today, to watch as two students with great passion for marine life captivated 23 peers, a school board member and three teachers. The many questions that students asked is a great testament to how strongly Eva and Anna's presentation connected to their audience. Absent of an emotional/meaningful connection, learning never lasts. Given the engagement of our students, I have no worries about the longevity of this presentation. I surely won't forget it. To top it all, Eva made cookies. Long Live Lakewood


Volume 18, Issue 11, Posted 12:21 PM, 07.06.2022