Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Here's to you, Mr. Detweiler

I have just discovered the website of one of my best Junior High school teachers, Ken Detweiler. He was a Civil War reenactor and often had a bunch of his friends come in character, to the point where they would ask what a savage (the long-haired Mexican-Indian kid) was doing in school with whites. Boy was that a lawsuit waiting to happen!

He'd also have some students shoot a recreated Civil War-era cannon, with actual gunpowder. Looks like he's discovered even more fun stuff for his students:

Probably my biggest project was bringing WWII armor to the school several years ago. We gave every student a ride on an armored half-track, and winners of an essay contest earned a trip in a sixteen ton WWII Stuart tank! (They tell me that there are only three such tanks left in America that are still used regularly for public demonstrations. )

In 2000, I was able to train 240 students from Oberon as a nine-company Civil War battalion in order to recreate the famous charge of the 1st Texas Regiment at Antietam.

My latest project is working on designing two big field trips. I organized two huge out of state field trips last year - one to New Mexico and one to Gettysburg. I can hardly wait to go back again!

Sad to see he has only won a single teacher of the year award, though he's been nominated for many others.

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