DeVos Learning Center

2017-2018 School Programs
Grades 6-8

AV82-216A 600 8.7mb

Citizens in Action: Learning from the Example of President Ford to Become an Engaged Citizen

Students will learn about the responsibilities of citizenship through the example of President Ford: from his early days as a Boy Scout and teammate to his service in the Navy, the United States Congress, and President of the United States. During an interactive Museum tour, students will create an eBook to illustrate what being an active citizen means to them. Students will discover ways in which they can positively engage in their communities and will put this into practice by participating in a special service project. (The length of this program varies from 3-4 depending on which activities are included – please indicate your preferred length when scheduling your program)

Standards Addressed:

  • Communicate clearly and coherently in writing, speaking, and visually expressing ideas pertaining to social science topics, acknowledging audience and purpose
  • Integrate information presented in different media or formats as well as in words to develop a coherent understanding of a topic or issue
  • Read and comprehend literary nonfiction
  • Use historical inquiry and analysis to study the past

Click here for pre– and post–visit activities

Taking a Stand: Making Choices with Integrity

uring this three and a half-hour program, students will explore how the concept of integrity relates to making decisions when faced with a dilemma and using one’s voice to help solve the problem. This three and a half-hour class uses the story of a 1934 football game in which Georgia Tech refused to play the University of Michigan unless Willis Ward, an African American player for U of M, was benched during the game. The future 38th president of the United States, Gerald Ford, was a teammate and friend of Ward’s. Students will examine how Ford faced a dilemma that he later described as a personal crisis as he decided whether or not to play in a football game that excluded a player based solely on race. Students will discuss the responsibility we all have when faced with injustice and the ways by which we can create change. They will learn that they, too, can create change through policy by learning to communicate with their elected officials.

Standards Addressed:

  • Understand social problems, social structure, institutions, class, groups, and interaction
  • Examine policy issues in group discussions to make reasoned and informed decisions
  • Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension
  • Write opinion pieces in which they introduce the topic, state an opinion, supply a reason for the opinion, and provide some sense of closure

Click here for pre- and post-visit activities

Ford and Willis Ward
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Model of Courage: How First Lady Betty Ford Used her Voice to Enact Positive Change

Through an interactive Museum tour and exploration of primary sources such as letters and video, students will learn about Mrs. Ford’s courage in using her voice to bring awareness to important issues such as health care and women’s rights. Students will then be challenged to use their voices for good as they create their own public service announcements to bring awareness to an issue of importance in today’s world. This program has a duration of 4.5 hours.

Standards Addressed:

  • Understand social problems, social structure, institutions, class, groups, and interaction
  • Use inquiry methods to acquire content knowledge about an issue
  • Explain how historians use a variety of sources to explore the past (e.g., artifacts, primary and secondary sources, etc.)
  • Identify the point of view (perspective of the author) and context when reading and discussing primary and secondary sources
  • Identify the role of the individual in history and the significance of one person’s ideas
  • Use cultural institutions to study an era

Click here for pre- and post-visit activities

Campaigning with Character

After a guided tour to learn about the character of President Ford and analyzing the 1976 election ads as a primary source, students will create and record their own campaign commercials using the museum exhibits. All technology is provided. Please allow three hours for this program.

Standards Addressed:

  • Use cultural institutions to study an era
  • Identify the point of view (perspective of the author) and context when reading and discussing primary and secondary sources
  • Integrate information presented in different media or formats as well as in words to develop a coherent understanding of a topic or issue
  • Use historical inquiry and analysis to study the past

Click here for pre- and post-visit activities

A1708-27A Americana
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Unlocking the Character Code: the Gerald R. Ford BREAKOUT Game

After a guided tour of the Museum, students work together in teams to solve character-related clues throughout the exhibits in order to unlock a secret code and reap the reward! This activity is great for team-building and developing critical thinking skills. “Unlocking the Character Code” can be added onto one of our other programs, or can serve as a stand-alone experience. Please allow at least 2.5 hours for both the guided tour and breakout game.

Click here for pre- and post-visit activities