Saturday, June 25, 2011

GEORGE WASHINGTON CARVER & A GREAT TEACHING RESOURCE: GARDEN OF PRAISE

GEORGE WASHINGTON CARVER & A GREAT TEACHING RESOURCE: GARDEN OF PRAISE


By Kevin Stoda, Taiwan

Today, at my junior high school, I discovered that some of my English students had just read about George. Washington, Carver. One teacher came over and asked me whether I knew him and Carver’s story and showed me the book used in the student’s class.

I nodded, “Yes, we studied him in 3rd, 4th and 5th grade when I was a child back in Missouri. Though, I think almost everyone knows of him–as he was one of the most famous [black] American inventors, teachers, and scientists of his era.”

“In fact,” I added, “George Washington Carver was born as a slave only about ten miles from where my mother and her siblings were born and raised in Jasper County, Missouri.”

http://www.nps.gov/gwca/index.htm

I concluded, “Carver passed away in 1943, so he was still alive when my mother was born (in November 1941), i.e. on the Eve of WWII.”

Then I went to my computer and looked up George Washington Carver on the internet and came across a fantastic educational website, called GARDEN OF PRAISE.

http://gardenofpraise.com/


IN REVIEWING GARDEN

In reviewing the website, GARDEN OF PRAISE, I learnt the following things about George Washington Carver, which either I didn’t learn in school–or too-many-years have passed for me to recall such details.

(1) “Thomas Edison offered him $100,000 a year to come and work for him, but he thought he could do more good at Tuskegee” Institute in Alabama.
(2) “Money, stylish clothes, and fine cars were not important to him. He thought the truly successful person was the one who had learned to serve others.”
(3) Carver “made his students work hard, and he insisted they do each experiment right. If they told him they had done something ‘about right’, he would say, ‘Don’t tell me it’s ‘about right’. If it’s ‘about right’, then it’s wrong.’” That’s why it is said of him till today: “He was one of the finest scientists the world has ever known.”
http://gardenofpraise.com/ibdcarve.htm

The GARDEN OF PRAISE site includes games, crosswords, tests—anything a teacher might want for their students, including a YouTube link to a video which reveals how George Washington Carver talked and thought about life, science, service, and education.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hKSE1_ujTs8&feature=player_embedded

There are also many other good links on Carver on this website, such as the one to the Tuskegee Institute of Technology.

http://www.tuskegee.edu/Search.aspx?sterm=carver

Moreover, on GARDEN OF PRAISE there nearly 100 biographies of inventors, politicians, leaders, scientists, artists and entertainers.

http://gardenofpraise.com/leaders.htm

All the material is aimed at young children and comes with a variety of teacher and internet resources.

I recommend it highly to all educators and lovers of biographies.

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