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Dear Fellow Fellows:
     So many of you have e-mailed about the show--I thank you with all
my heart--so I have decided to post a note on the listserv itself.

The vaudeville show was a great success!!  The students performed the
show three times in succession.  "Every hour on the hour" just like an
"authentic" show would have been done.  The first show was almost a
disaster!  Houdini dropped his coin in his first trick, and forgot one
of his best tricks altogether! One of the students in the last skit
tripped on the microphone cord, and fell onto the other fellow (of
course the audience thought it was all part of the act, but it upset the
students, and through them off a bit.)  The second show went perfectly,
and the students kept saying back stage "This is GREAT!  I want to do
more of this!!"  The third show was not quite up to par with the second,
but it was still very good.  The students loved watching the videos of
the shows (particularly the first one) and during our debriefing their
first comment was "When can we do another show?"  We were privileged to
have representatives from the State Board of Education attend the dress
rehearsal.  They were scheduled for a 10 minute interview with me, and
ended up spending 2 hours with us!!   Here is what the interviewer said,
which should appear in the November issue of KENTUCKY TEACHER Magazine.
As always with us, there is never a dull moment.  Laura and I are
scheduled to give a presentation on the AM work we have done NEXT
WEEK!!!  Oh, well, we wouldn't want the chance to get bored or anything!
Hope everyone is in good health>
Lydia DiMartino
Burgin Independent

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Message-ID: <[log in to unmask]>
From: "Fishback, Faun - Pub. Info." <[log in to unmask]>
To: LYDIA DIMARTINO <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Review of "Kentucky Teacher" stories
Date: Fri, 2 Oct 1998 15:03:32 -0400
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Ms. DiMartino,

        Here are the stories I've written about your lesson for the
American Memory Fellows program.  I would like for you to review them.
If you have any changes that need to be made, please make them and
underline them so that I can see them easily.

        I sent e-mail to  the Library of Congress webmaster earlier this
week to find out  information about the dates for Fellow Program
applications in 1999.  As yet, I have not received those answers.  It
will be inserted at the end of the main story when I get it.

        It would be great if I could hear from you by Wednesday, Oct. 7,
with any changes you have to the stories or your OK on the stories as
they are.

        Thanks again for letting us spent time with you last week!

American Memory site breathes
life into history and humanities

By Faun S. Fishback
Kentucky Department of Education

How much richer could your students' learning experiences be if they =
access right in your classroom to rare documents, early motion =
rare prints and photographs or a recorded sound collection?

Surprise, they do! All this is and more are only a few computer
keystrokes away on the Internet at That's the American
Memory homepage on the Library of Congress Web site. As part of a
project to digitize many of its American history holdings, the Library
of Congress is making those documents, photographs, films and prints
available to the public via the Internet. To encourage educators to use
the site, the national repository is training teams of teachers online
and during sessions in Washington, D.C., on how to use the site, =
lesson plans and post those lessons on the American Memory Web pages.

Lydia DiMartino, the library media specialist at Burgin (Independent)
High School, is one of Kentucky's representatives to the American =
Fellow program. She and former Burgin social studies teacher Laura =
were selected last year as an American Memory Fellow team. They were =
only team from Kentucky and one of the few from the Southeast U.S. =
now teaches in Marion County, so DiMartino and Drury are collaborating
and completing the American Memory requirements by developing a lesson
on vaudeville. (See story on this page.)

DiMartino says the American Memory Web site is "absolutely wonderful! =
offers an amazing array of primary resources about American history. =
lesson plans are a wonderful idea to get the resources used in the
classroom." Those resources include rare documents and collections that
the general public would not normally see =DB letters handwritten by
George Washington in the 1780s, draft copies of the Declaration of
Independence, frames from Thomas Edison's first "moving pictures." =20

"These kinds of things are invaluable for students to look at,"
DiMartino said. "They need to know that the writers of the Declaration
of Independence didn't just sit down and write it.  They need to see =
crossed out words and all drafts before it was finished. It really =
them a sense of the time period, what was going on at a certain time in

Currently, there are 40 collections available on the American Memory =
site, ranging from The African American Odyssey to Scenic Photographs
from Around the World (1894-96). "It's all just a click away," =

Vaudeville takes the stage at Burgin

Students in Lydia DiMartino's humanities class gave their families and
friends a slice of American history at the Burgin (Independent) High
School Fall Festival. They produced a vaudeville show complete with a
magician, comedians, an "animal" act and a songstress.=20

As the culminating activity of their study of music and entertainment =
the turn of the century, the 23 students performed authentic material
they'd found on the Internet or worked behind the scenes designing a
playbill, posters, scenery and helping as the backstage crew. Their =
was guided by DiMartino's extensive research as a participant of the
Library of Congress' American Memory Fellow Program (See accompanying
story). DiMartino, the school's library media specialist, is required =
submit a lesson plan using digitized pieces from the Library of =
Web site ( Her lesson plan may be selected to be posted
next spring on the Internet for other teachers to use in American
history, humanities and American studies classes.

As part of the vaudeville study, students constructed a history time
line for 10 years during the vaudeville era. They learned the =
of a vaudeville performance, read original scripts from vaudeville
shows, found lyrics to old songs, and discovered magic tricks during
their cyberspace exploration. They added words like "dumb act," "rube"
and "straight man" to their vocabularies. Students also are reading =
Doctorow's novel, "Ragtime," and DiMartino hopes to find funding for a
class trip to see a touring company's production of the Broadway

"I think the students have learned so much through this," DiMartino
said. "Not just music and the history of music, but life skills =DB =
it takes to be part of a group, good study habits, public speaking and
exposure to drama."

To learn more about DiMartino's /Drury's American Memory lesson, =
Ms. DiMartino at (606) 748-5282, ext. 22, or by e-mail,
[log in to unmask]

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