My passion for history began when I was a young girl. My grandfather, Harold “Bud” Burns, was a survivor of the Bataan Death March and a slave laborer for the Japanese. The adults around me as a child always spoke in honored reverence about my grandfather, despite the fact my grandfather rarely spoke of his experiences during World War II. His silence sparked my interest in learning about the war.
As a teacher, I strive to make sure my students learn and respect the sacrifices American veterans have made for their country and diligently work to make history come alive! I believe students increase learning by developing a personal connection to U.S. history and by using all of their senses. I realized my students needed to hear the sacrifices people made to keep their country free from the very people who fought to do so, just as I had heard the stories from my grandfather. Those stories and statistics in our textbook needed to become real to my students.