LOUISVILLE, Ky. (8/5/13) – The Kentucky Historical Society (KHS) congratulates Christina Cornelius, a teacher at James E. Farmer Elementary School in Louisville, who has been named the 2013 Kentucky History Teacher of the Year.
“I am honored and very humbled to have received this award from the Gilder Lehrman Institute (GLI),” Cornelius said. “I thank GLI for recognizing teachers of history within our great nation. However, I am most excited when I can see the enthusiasm in my students’ eyes when they enter the room which has been staged with stations pertaining to the Civil War and exclaim, ‘Yes! We are going to Pennsylvania for the Battle of Gettysburg!’”
Cornelius has been teaching fifth-grade students at Farmer Elementary since 2007. She sponsors an annual Historical Character Day at the elementary school as part of her instruction and utilizes a number of Kentucky’s historic sites to engage her students experientially. She earned her undergraduate degree in elementary education from the University of Kentucky and her master’s degree in the same discipline from the University of Louisville.
“Experiential learning is a powerful tool which allows students to grow both academically and socially thus, allowing the development of the whole child,” Cornelius said of her teaching style. “Students should be given the opportunity to examine, analyze and critique a variety of primary resources pertaining to various historical periods. This practice leads to enhancing critical thinking skills.”
Cornelius, of Louisville, will receive a $1,000 honorarium and will be in the running to be named the 2013 National History Teacher of the Year this fall. James E. Farmer Elementary school’s library will receive a core archive of history books and educational materials from the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History and HISTORY® network. Cornelius will also be invited to a 2014 Gilder Lehrman Teacher Seminar, and James E. Farmer Elementary School will be named a Gilder Lehrman Affiliate School.
“This award gives us the chance to recognize great history teachers across the country,” said Lesley S. Herrmann, executive director of the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History. “It puts exceptional educators front and center.”
Inaugurated in 2004, the National History Teacher of the Year Award promotes and celebrates the teaching of American history in classrooms across the United States. The award honors one exceptional K-12 teacher of American history from each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Department of Defense schools and U.S. territories. The award is co-sponsored by The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History (https://www.gilderlehrman.org), HISTORY® (http://www.history.com) and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation on behalf of its Preserve America program. The Kentucky Historical Society serves as the program’s state affiliate.
Information provided by the Kentucky Historical Society
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