Where else in the state of Maine can you literally walk through history, beginning with primitive man and continuing to present day all in one building? Where. . . at Monmouth Academy’s History Fair. History Fair is an annual event that takes place on the Friday before April vacation. It is as commonly known to Monmouth as the Apple Blossom Fair and the Monmouth Fair.

Each year, all ninth through eleventh grade students are put into teams and assigned periods of history to research. Monmouth Academy history teachers Gail Sisto, Bonnie Green, and Jeff Deblois organize and oversee the day long event.

Each team plans times to meet outside of school. Some project requirements include making clothing for the time period you are assigned, cooking food, finding music, tracing maps, and creating a timeline. Props and hands on activities are made to entertain young children who come to visit.

Each team is asked questions about their topic by at least two teachers who grade them. Many students, especially freshman, worry about the questions that are going to be asked and whether or not they know the answers, but teachers reassure the students that if they did all the research they were required to do, the questions would be a piece of cake.

Monmouth students from grades first through eighth walk over with their teachers to view the exhibits, sample foods, participate in hands on activities, and gaze at costumes with great interest. Parents and community members attend the fair as well. Groups of seniors help set up tables, guide classes through the fair, and help with clean up.

Preparing for this event requires a lot of long hours and teamwork, but I believe I learned much more from this approach than if I were to just read this information from a textbook.

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