Buffalo Island Central High School: Remembering the Forgotten War
Project Name: Remembering the Forgotten War
Project Team: Alissa Hughes, Colin Weatherly & Harris McCord
EAST Facilitator: Jill Sanders
This project began as part of a Beyond the Bell Grant with the EAST Initiative. We wanted to record and preserve local Korean War veterans’ personal stories. Korean War veterans are getting older, and regretfully, many of them are not with us today. We need to preserve their stories while they are here to tell them. Our EAST program collaborated with Mr. George West, Education Outreach Coordinator for the Butler Center, to create a Reader’s Theater about individual soldiers experiences in the Korean War.
Five local Korean War veterans were interviewed. These interviews were the source of information for this project. The interviews were transcribed. After that, Mr. George West came to our school and hosted a Reader’s Theater Workshop. We worked throughout the day to create a draft of the script. Students worked in groups to choose notable quotes from each soldier’s interview. Once these quotes were selected, they were arranged into categories so that the narrative flowed well and told a story. Then a draft was created. Our editors worked on revising and editing the script to make it easily understood and memorable. Once we had our script ready, we were able to work with Mr. George West and schedule a day to meet
with him at the Butler Center. He helped us finish revising the script and worked with us on reading with expression. Mr. West was able to schedule an audio recording session with Jakeob Ward at the Rodham Clinton Children’s Library media room. He was instrumental in helping us get a good quality recording of the Reader’s Theater. This is the version that we were able to post as a podcast on Soundcloud. We are currently in the process of promoting and sharing this podcast so that others throughout the state can access it. Our dream is that teachers would be able to use our podcast and Reader’s Theater script to teach the Korean War. We hope that this would give a personal side of the war and allow students to actually experience it in some small way which would make the learning more real.
In May of 2018, our EAST program hosted a public performance of “The Forgotten War”. All five veterans that we interviewed were able to attend this program. We presented them with a DVD of their original interview as well as a copy of the Reader’s Theater script. Our entire community as well as the student body of our high school attended this performance. This project was created during the 2017-2018 school year but was not finished before EAST Conference last year. The Reader’s Theater was finished, recorded, and presented to the public after Conference last year. Our podcast of the recording was published this school year. We are in the
process of promoting it so that more people can learn from it and enjoy it.
Our next goal would be to create a Reader’s Theater with Vietnam War veterans and their stories.
The Butler Center for Arkansas Studies at the Central Arkansas Library System is dedicated to preserving the heritage and history of the communities we serve and to collaborate with other groups to build strong community-wide information resources. To assist us in accomplishing this goal, we are challenging EAST programs to collect, archive, and share local history that is important to your community. The most successful entries will use a variety of sources and media types to find and analyze historical evidence and to tell the compelling stories of their town using media technology in creative ways.