History teacher named best in Arkansas

Jessica Brown, an American history and psychology teacher at Parkers Chapel High School in Union County, has been named the 2019 Arkansas History Teacher of the Year.

The award is presented annually by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History to one teacher in each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, Department of Defense Dependents schools and U.S. territories.

The National History Teacher of the Year will be announced in October from the pool of state winners.

As a teacher for 12 years, Brown was praised for inspiring her students to recognize their power to change communities and the world and to use historical events to promote critical thought and engagement.

Brown's students recently produced a documentary on the World War II internment of Japanese-Americans at Arkansas camps titled Forgetting Ourselves. The film was produced for the Arkansas Declaration of Learning program, which gives educators the opportunity to create lesson plans using historical objects and art from museums.

Arkansas Education Secretary Johnny Key commended Brown for her work.

"Not only does Ms. Brown share the importance of learning with her students, she does so in a way that is engaging and educational," Key said in announcing the $1,000 award to Brown and the donation of history education materials to her school.

Nominations, due by March 31, 2020, can be made at the institute's website: gilderlehrman.org/content/national-history-teacher-year.

Metro on 07/17/2019

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