Contest displays students' historical knowledge

Wednesday, April 30th 2008, 3:03 pm
By: News 9

By Darren Brown, INsite Team

Brown vs. the Board of Education, WWII Japanese Internment Camps and The Iranian Hostage Crisis are just a few of the history topics that students tackled Wednesday at the Oklahoma National History Day State Contest.

National History Day brought students from across the state to show off their knowledge at the Oklahoma History Center.

The exhibits represented months of research.

Director of Special Projects for the Oklahoma History Center Whit Edwards said the exhibits get better each year.

"The greatest thing about this, other than it excites students about their history, is that it teaches them how to learn, because they have to do research," Edwards said.

For Crockett Ford, an eighth-grader from Muskogee's Ben Franklin Science Academy, inspiration came from the most unlikely place. He was watching television.

"It was talking about ‘Operation Eagle Claw,' and so I thought, ‘I didn't know we had any hostage situation with Iran before,' and so I kind of looked into it, " Ford said.

His interest in ‘Operation Eagle Claw' led to his exhibit.

"The next week I went to school, and it was, ‘Oh, I have to do History Day', and then that just popped into my head," Ford said.

Only some of the students will go on the national competition in Washington D.C. But Edwards said the payoff is the knowledge itself.

"You can't help but learn it, and you get excited about it, because you're now an authority on that subject."