National History Day projects are a success

Emma Bascom, Associate Editor

This year, De Soto High School’s US and World History classes decided to take part in National History Day—a competition that allows students to choose a topic and create a presentation over it. The presentations included academic papers, websites and posters in the form of exhibits.

In the beginning of the year, the social studies department got together to brainstorm ideas of how to “get students more involved,” according to social studies teacher Matt Rice. “We wanted students to start doing more presentations, and also give the community an opportunity to come in and see things. We want students to be able to step outside of the walls and do more than what’s just in the classroom. Ultimately, National History Project will be just that.”

Rice said that the projects and presentation days were a success, especially since this is the first year that DHS has officially participated in National History Day.

“We were really just kind of feeling it out to see what things would look like and what it would feel like … We wanted to do something kind of simple and basic as a lead-in to what we’ll do in the future. We definitely thought it was a success,” Rice said.

Junior Colton Pasquale and sophomore Josie Bedford agree to a point.

“Yes, it was a success because it got all of the students together to do something, but it also was not successful because not as many people tried as hard as they would have on a regular project. You could tell some were thrown together the night before,” Bedford said.

Bedford and Pasquale chose the topics of ‘Cold War Spies’ and ‘Presidential Pets,’ respectively.

Pasquale believed that the topic of ‘Presidential Pets’ made the project very enjoyable and that, even though he will be a senior next year and the project will not be required, he would participate again.

“Yes, I would totally do this again. It was very educational to me and so much fun. I mean, I got to learn about rams that chew tobacco and parrots that cussed,” Pasquale said.

In all seriousness, Pasquale said that National History Day was “very educational and very fun to participate in.”