Economics Arkansas is proud to announce a new summer teacher workshop series highlighting six historic sites in the Arkansas Delta and the unique economic impact each has had on the state.
Partnering with Arkansas Center for Research in Economics at University of Central Arkansas, one-day workshops will be conducted at the following sites: Johnny Cash Boyhood Home and Dyess Colony (Dyess), Hemingway-Pfeiffer Museum (Piggott), Lakeport Plantation (Lake Village), Delta Cultural Center (Helena), Southern Tenant Famers Museum (Tyronza), and Rohwer Japanese American Relocation Center (McGehee).
The program is made possible by a grant from Arkansas Humanities Council and National Endowment for the Humanities.
These workshops are designed for Arkansas PreK-12 teachers and will provide insight into the rich cultural history of Arkansas. Participants will leave each session with new lesson plans, techniques, and resources to provide their students with creative and engaging learning experiences.
The workshop sites exhibit historical significance in areas such as literature and music, agriculture, world and national events, local culture and lifestyle; all of which contribute to the economic state of the Arkansas Delta region.
“It is our belief that most Arkansas residents are unfamiliar with these sites and their place in history,” says Lisa Byrum, Economics Arkansas program coordinator.
“Spotlighting their value as tools for teaching will encourage educators to emphasize their considerable contributions to the area, both historically and in the present-day economy.”
Most Arkansans are familiar with country music’s singer-songwriter Johnny Cash, but may not know about the federal agricultural resettlement community in Dyess in which Cash spent most of his childhood.
A decrepit smokestack and cemetery are all that remain of a WWII Japanese internment camp which from 1942-1945 held over 8,000 Japanese Americans on around 10,000 acres of Arkansas Delta swamps and farmland.
Many Arkansas residents may not realize that one of Ernest Hemingway’s most famous novels, “A Farewell to Arms,” was largely written in a converted barn studio in the small town of Piggott.
While these sites represent significant contributions to American literature, music, politics and historical events, they also illustrate economic principles such as scarcity, opportunity costs, incentives, and human capital.
Arkansas PreK-12 educators attending the workshops will earn professional development credit approved by Arkansas Department of Education and receive classroom resources. Workshops will consist of facility tours, guest speakers, and demonstrations of classroom activities and will highlight field trip opportunities.
Workshops will take place in June and July; registration is now open and teachers can sign up for any or all of the six workshops by visiting www.economicsarkansas.org.
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