Lindy Poling, the much-honored Millbrook (N.C.) High School social studies teacher, helped create one of the nation’s most innovative and extensive Vietnam War history classes, the pioneering “Lessons of Vietnam, ” after she and two other teachers returned from an educational study tour in Vietnam in 1996. She started teaching the course that year to seniors at Millbrook, a Raleigh, North Carolina, public school.
This unique class includes presentations from as many as 25 guest speakers; a three-day annual trip to Washington, D.C., where the students visit the Vietnam Veterans Memorial; and “linking” each student with a Vietnam veteran. “My students have Vietnam veteran pen pal links (mostly via e-mail) from all over the U.S. Some are local, and some even live abroad, ” Poling told us. “Some of our classroom speakers are from Raleigh, but many come from the Washington, D.C., area and other far away places.”
Poling and her Lessons of Vietnam students also publish Bridges , an excellent newsletter that we have been pleased to mention favorably in the “Arts of War” column in The VVA Veteran . The latest issue, a Special Edition, is now on the World Wide Web. It includes student-written articles about war correspondents, the upcoming Vietnam Veterans Memorial Visitor Center, and a report on the class’s most recent field trip to D.C. Take a look at: http://mhs.wcpss.net/academics/poling/Bridges/2008/SpEd_Spring08.pdf