On March 22, Trident Academy ninth grade literature students attended an American Civil War reenactment, where they were able to experience war in the 1860s. This was the culminating experience for their unit on The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara. The students read the book, created a battlefield for reenactments in class, and watched the film Gettysburg.
The Civil War reenactment was held at Legare Farms on John’s Island. This event featured military demonstrations, medical and civilian camps, and an infantry headquarters. Kennedy McGinnis, student, enjoyed being able to experience what she has learned in the classroom.
“It was a lot of fun, and the trip was a lot like the book that we read. I could connect a lot of things,” McGinnis said.
“Trips like this give students a real world tie-in,” says Mary Silgals, librarian and literature teacher at Trident Academy. “They are able to participate in history and it enhances their learning, especially for our visual learners.”
“I thought it was crazy how they handled the hospital camps,” McGinnis said, “I had no idea it was like that.”
Two Trident Academy students were able to shoot cannons, which Silgals says was an unforgettable experience.
Gregory Sullivan was one of the students who fired the cannon. “The cannons and the hospital station were the most interesting stations there. The man said the cannon would feel like a punch in the gut, but it wasn’t like that at all.”
Silgals firmly believes in the multisensory approach to teaching. She gives instructions, guides the learning experience and reinforces the experiences in order to benefit the students.
“I liked leaving school for a little bit and learning about iron work, Calvary, and the military in the Civil War,” Sullivan said.
The battle that was reenacted was the Bloody Bridge Battle, the largest battle on John’s Island during the Civil War.
For more information on multisensory approaches: http://www.readingrockets.org/article/6332/