Aubrie LaSyone, a fourth-grade teacher at Lukeville Upper Elementary in Brusly, Louisiana, recently completed an intense, six-day immersion in American history at the Colonial Williamsburg Teacher Institute.
The Teacher Institute was created to encourage history education and make it engaging for students. Now in its 28th year, the Teacher Institute helps prepare teachers to help students meet national and state history standards through hands-on immersion experiences in colonial history.
LaSyone is a teacher in West Baton Rouge Parish School District. She has taught for four years at Lukeville Upper Elementary School. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Louisiana State University.
The Colonial Williamsburg Teacher Institute provides participants with interactive teaching techniques and skills to become mentor teachers who can assist their peers and other educators to develop active learning classrooms and make history exciting for their students.
During six-day sessions on location in Colonial Williamsburg and the surrounding area, participants engage in an interdisciplinary approach to teaching social studies with American history as the focus. Teachers have the opportunity to exchange ideas with historians, meet character interpreters and become part of the story in The Revolutionary City. Throughout each day, teachers work collaboratively with Colonial Williamsburg staff and Master Teachers to examine interactive teaching techniques and develop instructional materials that improve instruction, raise literacy levels, enhance thinking skills, and bring history to life in the classroom. Participating teachers agree to conduct in-service training sessions following their attendance at Teacher Institute in order to share their experience with other teachers. Teachers also are required to develop lesson plans to implement in the classroom.
The program began in 1990 with 44 fifth-grade teachers from two southern California school districts. Today, more than 8,900 teachers from all 50 states, two territories, and five foreign countries have participated since the inception of the Teacher Institute. To learn more about Teacher Institute, visit www.history.org/history/teaching/tchsti.cfm.