Advancing Education at the Natchez Trace Parkway
The Natchez Trace Parkway has over 10,000 of American history which means there are a lot of fun facts for students to learn! Education is so important, and the Natchez Trace Service has come up with a hands-on, exciting way for students to learn the history of the Trace.
Students of all ages who seek an appreciation of what the Natchez Trace Parkway represents will develop a better understanding of the people who carved the past, gave foundation to the present, and influenced our future. Every year National Park Service rangers are able to teach more and more people about its history through these programs.
In 2009, an educational project funded by a “Connect Trails to Parks” grants provided the opportunity for the NTP and the Natchez Trace National Scenic Trail to reach into classrooms surrounding its 444-mile-long corridor. Over fifty curriculum-based lesson plans were developed.
Since then the NTP has received two additional “Connect Trails to Parks” grants. These grants have enabled rangers to work on engaging teachers in using the Natchez Trace as a teaching tool. Teacher-workshop sessions from Nashville, TN to Jackson, MS, have helped teachers learn about the Natchez Trace and how to use ranger-developed classroom lesson plans. The lesson plans, a teacher’s new guide, and a field trip planning suggestions are available on the Natchez Trace Parkway website: www.nps.gov/natr. New traveling trunk kits are also available for teachers to use in their classrooms.
In 2011, over 10, 000 students and teachers were reached by ranger-led education programs! Students from schools that had never visited the Trace were able to do so through field trip funding provided by the “Connect Trails to Parks” grants.
Educational programs are designed to ignite both students’ and teachers’ interests of the Parkway and its trails. The NTP provides healthy outdoor activities and offers opportunities to explore both cultural and natural history.
We encourage children and adults to attend the ranger-led programs throughout the year. Check out our Events Calendar to see dates and times. For more information about the educational programs, contact Jane Farmer 662-680-4015.
Credit: National Park Service