Saturday, May 20, 2017

Night at the Museum

Tonight was a bit of a bittersweet moment, as today was Night at the Museum for Alyssa.  It will be the final time she participates, since she is graduating in twelve days.   (Warning: This post will have tons of pictures!!!  If you're on a phone, you might want to wait til you're at a computer.)

For those of you new to my blog, the Night at the Museum is an event put on by the Junior High and High School students at the school on base.  Started 4 years ago, instead of taking a written final exam in their history classes, the students instead put on a live event where they re-enact events from history.  Parents and other members of the community are invited to attend to not only see what the students have been learning but to also maybe learn a bit as well.  It really is a neat event and it's aways fun to see how the different classes translate what they have learned in their textbook to an actual visual show for everyone to see.

My only complaint about the Night at the Museum is that it's not long enough.  Granted, I'm sure it's plenty long for those participating but there are so many different things to see and do and only a few hours to cram as many as you can into.

We arrived at 4:30 to drop Alyssa off and to start looking around.  First we made our way into the Scorp, which is a multipurpose building that serves as both the cafeteria and the school theater.  This year they were having displays about the different countries of the world.  Along with a student created presentation of their country, most of the tables also had food samples of recipes from their country.  While I didn't eat anything (I did enjoy a nice cup of Earl Grey tea from Great Britain however), Ashleigh and Garrett did sample lumpia, soba noodles, a puff treat from Sri Lanka, and various other treats, as well as learned about the Australian Tim Tam Slam challenge.

Here's Ashleigh with some of her treats.

There were some really neat displays and some of the students even dressed in clothing to represent the country.

One of the tables about Japan had these really cute dolls on display, along with an authentic Kimono.

These two young men represented Sri Lanka.  I had to get a picture as I loved their shirts.

And these two beautiful young ladies were at the Thailand table.   Aren't those outfits goreous?  The two necklaces were also on display at that table.

After we looked around at all the tables and the kids had sampled a few different things, we headed off to catch a few of the Junior High shows.  The first one we caught was about the Aztec civilization and I thought this group of kids really did a great job.

About this time was when the Jr High groups shut down and the Sr High students get started.  We headed to the gym first, knowing that Alyssa's group was in there and we wanted to make sure we saw her.  First, we caught the Tuskegee Airman display, since it was also in the gym. This particular show was a bit confusing and I think it might have been better being more about Segregation in the Military in WWII as there seemed to be very little about the Tuskegee Airman themselves. While I was a bit disappointed about it not really being about the Tuskegee Airman themselves, it was a good demonstration as to what People of Color dealt with.  I won't complain to much though, as I know these kids put a lot of work into their scripts. Most of the classes write the scripts themselves.

Following the Tuskegee Airman, we headed over to watch Alyssa's classes presentation on the History of the Filibusterer.  Alyssa played the part as our host, taking us on a trip through time to the origins of the Filibuster, from Pirates to Roman times to modern times.

Alyssa explaining that a filibuster gives Congressmen a right to "talk and talk and talk" to hold off a vote.

Taking us back to Roman Times, when Julius Caesar was running for office but was unable to enter the city.  Cato, his opponent, tried to hold off the vote on whether or not Caesar could run while not in the city.

Modern Day Filibuster, with a "congressman" reading weather facts and sports scores.

Filibusting by reading from a medical journal and reading the ingredients off a sports drink.

Our next stop was the Speak Easy.  This is always a favorite and it's done every year.  Ashleigh loves going to the Speak Easy because they serve "hooch", which is actually Shirley Temples.  After a brief history of prohibition and the rise of Speak Easy's, we were given access to the most hopping club on campus.

Our Speak Easy was in a back room of the New York Public Library.

Access to the Speak Easy - after the secret knock.

Ashleigh's happy to have her glass of "hooch".. This stuff is hard to come by, you know ;)

Of course, what's a hot club without some celebrities.  The kids got to mingle with Charles Lindberg, Duke Ellington, Lou Gerig, and Babe Ruth among others.

Lou Gehrig, Babe Ruth and Charlie Chaplin. 
Duke Ellington

Lou Gehrig points out that we have an intruder.
Well, all good things must come to an end.. The police showed up and raided the club and we had to run out as quick as possible. Luckily we made it out without being cuffed, but others were not so lucky.

 After our close call with the law, we decided to relax under a tree in the park, where we caught a live taping of The Bachelor - featuring King Henry VIII and his 6 wives.  The ultimate winner was Katherine Parr who was awarded the final rose.  Immediately after, on the same stage, was the Saint Bartholomew's Day Massacre and the Defenestration of Prague.

Our next stop on the exhibit list was Germany and the Great Depression. Here was witnessed the signing of the Treaty of of Versailles.

As we toured this exhibit, we also saw what the resulted in Germany following the signing.

Such as the depreciation of the German dollar, rendering it useless.  (Sorry for the bad photos, I was shooting directly into the setting sun).

The drop in Stock values, rendering them worthless.

And finally, the rise of Adolph Hitler.

With the setting of the sun, we had time for one more exhibit before Night at the Museum was ended.  It was a hard choice as there were four exhibits we hadn't seen yet.  Finally, we decided to head to the exhibit "World War II: Home Front to Iwo Jima".   This one turned out to be pure comedy for us - I'll explain why in a few minutes.

This particular exhibit had multiple parts to it.  For the start of the exhibit, we were brought into a room to witness the funeral of Jamie Arnold, a female pilot who died in combat but was not given military honors or rights because she was a woman.

We were then moved to another room where we became part of the Manhattan Project and the testing of the first Atomic Bomb. (Unfortunately, my photos here didn't come out good as it was really dark inside )

Next stop was a weapons factory of WW2, where women worked out of duty to help their husbands who were away at war.  Here we got to see the working conditions of the factory, how poorly the women were treated by their male superiors, as well as discussion about how the women felt in regards to the war itself.

Finally, we were taking to the jungles of Iwo Jima .  Here we watched how three soldiers were ambushed by a Japanese soldier.  The Japanese had an advantage as they were familiar with the jungles, where our soldiers were not.

Here's that funny story I mentioned at the start of this exhibit..  After all the "soldiers" were dead on the ground, Garrett went up to the fence to get a better look. Then out of no where he says "Oooh no, well at
least you tried"..  This was overheard by the soldier in the dark grey shirt who laughed and came over to see Garrett since he thought the comment was so funny.  Some of the things that come out of a kids mouth!!

With Night at the museum over, we had a bit of wait time while the students cleaned up their areas and put their classrooms back in order.  Since Alyssa was in the gym, we just hung out in the courtyard so the kids had the opportunity to run around and enjoy the grass, since the school has really lush grass that's fun to play in.  And of course, we had to take pictures :)

Alyssa's final "Night at the Museum" is over.  The kids and I will still continue to go each year that they have it, even without a student involved, just because it really is a neat program and even without a student in the school, I want to continue to support it.   These students put so much into these exhibits and they should be so proud of themselves.

1 comment:

  1. What a fantastic evening, Brenda! I loved all the students' creativity!


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