Happy Constitution Week Day #2

Today’s Constitution Fact:

James Madison was the only delegate to attend every meeting of the Constitutional Convention. He took detailed notes of the various discussions and debates that took place during the convention. The journal that he kept during the Constitutional Convention was kept secret until after he died. It (along with other papers) was purchased by the US government in 1837 at a price of $30,000 (roughly $629,000 today). The journal was published in 1840. That journal is the only record we have of the Convention!

Did you know you can get the Constitution on your iPad or iPhone? Go to: https://itunes.apple.com/app/u.s.-constitution-and-facts/id391169491?mt=8 to download this free copy of the Constitution of the United States of America

A great site for information about the Constitution is http://constitutioncenter.org/constitution-day/, where there are links to information about the signers of the document, and suggestions for what you can do on Constitution Day.

Happy Constitution Week!

On September 17, 1787, the Constitution of the United States was signed. This Wednesday marks the 227th anniversary of the founding of the government of the United States of America.  To help to celebrate this event, there will be announcements each day in school and posted on this blog.  Students will be learning about the Constitution and its amendments all year long as part of both the US history courses and the several electives we offer that are America-themed.

Today’s trivia is:

When the Constitution was signed in 1787, the United States’ population was 4 million people. It is now more than 330 million people. In 1787, Philadelphia was the nation’s largest city, with 40,000 inhabitants. Now, it is New York City with a population of 8.5 million.

Did you know you can get the Constitution on your iPad or iPhone? Go to: https://itunes.apple.com/app/u.s.-constitution-and-facts/id391169491?mt=8 to download this free copy of the Constitution of the United States of America

You can get more information about the Constitution through a number of websites.  Today’s featured site is: http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/constitution_transcript.html where you can read a full transcript of the Constitution.

Welcome Back!

Summer is over, and here we are, ready to go for another school year! We’ve bid a fond farewell to the Class of 2014, and we are happy to welcome the Class of 2018 to our History Hall, where they will stay for the next four years on their path to graduation. Hopefully they will all be able to open their lockers…

We’ll be updating material on this blog all year long, commenting on current events in the school and around the globe, as well as bringing you all the important information about the BHS Social Studies Department. Please visit the faculty pages on this blog for information about our teachers and the courses they teach.

Nelson Mandela

from the Boston Globe, Coverage of Nelson Mandela's visit to Boston, http://www.bostonglobe.com/2013/07/17/nelson-mandela-visit-boston/sXVhfsd1JX1zxUzjFeInXK/story.html

from the Boston Globe, Coverage of Nelson Mandela’s visit to Boston in 1990, http://www.bostonglobe.com/2013/07/17/nelson-mandela-visit-boston/sXVhfsd1JX1zxUzjFeInXK/story.html

Nelson Mandela died in his home in Johannesburg, South Africa, on Thursday at the age of 95.

Nelson Mandela became a figure of global importance for his role in the ending of the racist system of Apartheid that had been imposed in South Africa.  Mandela was a member of the African National Congress, which was a body that he described as dedicated to the “overthrow of white supremacy and the establishment of a truly democratic form of government.”  For his efforts, he was arrested multiple times before being tried for treason and sentenced to life imprisonment in 1964. He concluded his defense with this statement: “I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”  After his imprisonment, he became a rallying point for those working to change the government, but that change was a long time in coming.

Nelson Mandela was released from prison on February 11, 1990, at the same time that democracy movements had sprung up around the globe and the Cold War was ending, and he emerged as a leading figure in the effort to dismantle Apartheid.  Working with South African President F.W. De Klerk, they successfully did just that, subsequently electing Mandela as the new leader of the country and earning both men the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993.

Though Mandela’s personal and political struggle was long, and by his own admission he was in no way a perfect man, he became known for his forgiveness of those who had so brutally oppressed him, and his public ability to forgive even those who were his jailers served as an inspiration for South Africa as it attempted to reconcile its own history, and for the world as it continues to struggle with oppression in its many forms.

Here at Burlington High School, we wish to acknowledge the struggle that Mandela led, the victories he achieved, and the leadership he showed. Though he himself remarked “I am no angel,” he did make the world a better place through his actions and his determination. South Africa has “lost its greatest son,” as current South African President Jacob Zuma said on Thursday, and the world has lost an individual who, for a while, transcended not only the petty boundaries humans create to separate themselves, but the bounds of history itself.

May we know more like him in the years to come.

Parent Teacher conferences

Several teachers in the department offer on-line sign ups for Parent Teacher Conferences. Click on the teacher’s names below to visit their sign up sheets/blogs for more information. Teachers will be added as their sign up forms become available, so if your child’s teacher is not here, check back!

Todd Whitten (please fill out the requested information on the spreadsheet)

Stephanie Fishel

Michael Milton

Todd Saxon

A new blog in the department

We’ve got a new blog in the family! http://modernamericabhs.wordpress.com is the blog for the senior elective Modern America. It is open to students to post their reactions, thoughts, and extra materials as they go through the course exploring the popular culture of America from the 60’s through now. Feel free to let them know what you think by sharing your memories, commentary, and favorites from the past!