Medal Ceremony and the Place of the Humanities in Our Schools

I’m sorry it’s taken me a few days to blog about the day at the White House this past Monday, but I’m just now getting my feet back on the ground.

It was a tremendouss event and honor for NHD.  The day started in the morning at the National Endowment for the Humanities.  The medalists (including me as representative of NHD) were on a panel and took questions from NEH staff and guests.  It was a lively discussion about the importance of the humanities, especially in students’ lives and education.  I sat with a distinguished group of academics who discussed the situation in higher education and I gave the k-12 perspective.  Mainly, I emphasized that by the time students enter college and become adults, it is almost too late.  Humanities education must begin at the elementary and secondary school levels.  The emphasis on STEM has not helped this situation so it is incumbent upon all of us to work with teachers, parents and students to engage them in a meaningful study and understanding of the humanities (and arts).  It is by doing so that we will help to create well-rounded future citizens.  Science and math are critical subjects, but so is history.  All together, these subjects are a beautiful combination in a human being.

In the afternoon, we went to the White House for the medal ceremony.  The President gave excellent remarks (which can be found on the NHD homepage.

If you missed the ceremony you can watch it here( I accept the award at the 18:01 minute mark!)



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3 responses to “Medal Ceremony and the Place of the Humanities in Our Schools

  1. Nathan

    If true humanities instruction doesn’t start until late high school or in college, students miss out on the all-important context. With no background in the subjects, instruction in 11th and 12th grade becomes a mush of facts presented in boring ways. Middle school students who learn to select their own topics and look at the context of their events start connecting the dots early and view the humanities as an avenue for creative expression and discovery

  2. Do you know where we can watch the interview portion? Or is that classified?(:

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