Imagine the world through the eyes of a ten-year-old. Your school bus just dropped you off at the foot of a pier leading to arguably the largest ship you have ever seen and your mind begins to race with thoughts of the possibilities that lay inside. With every step you take down the 600-foot pier, you cannot help but marvel at the wonder what lies before you; the day ahead is sure to be one you will never forget. The Patriots Point Naval and Maritime Museum thrives on this “awe” factor, assuring every student that comes aboard the USS Yorktown is cleared for an unforgettable landing.
Since 2004, Patriots Point has implemented the Institute of History and Science, a program that serves as an innovative enhancement to the curriculum taught in the classroom. Due to public school budget constraints, many schools cannot afford to bring their students aboard the USS Yorktown, thus we have initiated a fundraiser to supplement their cost. With your support, students will have the opportunity to participate in program activities, such as:
“People, Places & Living Spaces” Tour of the USS Yorktown: A walk through of the areas where our heroes ate, slept, and fought for us; including a trip to the flight deck where a math dimension was recently added. “With an average wingspan of 58 inches, how many fifth graders does it take to cover the width of the USS Yorktown?” Fingertip to fingertip, the students work together to answer this question firsthand.
Hands-On Science: The wet and dry laboratories within our Marine Education Center provide the perfect platform for students to learn about the biotic creatures and abiotic elements that make up our estuarine environment. Science experiments, live sea creatures, and projection microscopes make this an interactive station.
Dockside Laboratory: While on our one-of-a-kind floating dock, instructors teach with a specially designed stream table that allows students to better understand the features, processes and changes in the Earth’s lands and oceans. Students also “build a barrier island” to better comprehend the processes of erosion, deposition, and more.
Literacy Initiative: To complement history and science lessons, the Institute recently added a literacy component to the program; supported by data that proves there is a higher level of subject matter comprehension when lessons are presented in the form of a story. Thus, students join “Hydrogen Hannah” and “Great Grandpa Smith” on their fun adventures on the USS Yorktown. These literacy-supported letters and stories are given to teachers prior to their day’s visit to aid in classroom discussion.
Medal of Honor Museum: Designed to instill a love for the country and an understanding of the cost of freedom. Literacy-supported letters from “Great Grandpa Smith” during his time in war are also incorporated into this station.
The end result of the Institute is an engaging, enriching, and exciting environment for learning as the USS Yorktown provides an experience that young minds don’t soon forget. By blending the culture and excitement of this unique learning environment, students are cleared for an unforgettable landing!