Several students from Thomas County Middle School were winners at the state level for National History Day in the Junior Division. The competition took place at Mercer University in Macon, Georgia on April 27, 2013. In the performance division, Kaitlyn Fender and Cheyenne Owens received honorable mention for their performance entitled “Holocaust”. In the exhibit category, honorable mention went to Tori Stringer and Drew Lloyd for “The Fire that Changed America” and third place went to Erin Alford and Celia Kornegay for “The Desegregation of Thomas County Schools”. Kennedy Ward and Katelyn Hobbs received second place and were named national qualifiers for their project entitled, “The Ridley Cases”. Ward and Hobbs will advance to the national competition which will take place June 9-13 at the University of Maryland. All of these students are in Mrs. Heather Ward’s 7th grade MERIT Social Studies class.
According to its official website, National History Day (NHD) is a highly regarded academic program for elementary and secondary school students.
Each year, more than half a million students, encouraged by thousands of teachers nationwide participate in the NHD contest. Students choose historical topics related to a theme and conduct extensive primary and secondary research through libraries, archives, museums, oral history interviews and historic sites. After analyzing and interpreting their sources and drawing conclusions about their topics’ significance in history, students present their work in original papers, websites, exhibits, performances and documentaries. These products are entered into competitions in the spring at local, state and national levels where they are evaluated by professional historians and educators. The program culminates in the Kenneth E. Behring National Contest each June held at the University of Maryland at College Park.