Story courtesy of Savannah Franklund, special to WROY/WRUL News from the Rural Schools Collaborative
Rural Schools Collaborative is pleased to announce our 2022-23 Celia B. Godsil Grants in Place Fellow recipients. The Fellows will work with their respective students on place-based projects, which address specific community issues. We believe that rural teachers are placemakers. Through place-based learning efforts, teachers are able to express their dedication to the community by rooting classroom teachings in the unique history, environment, economy, and culture of the location in which they educate.
Each Celia B. Godsil Grants in Place Fellow receives a $2,500 grant that supports the student-centered place-based project, a professional development presentation, and an honorarium for the educator. The Grants in Place program is funded through the generous support from Celia and Mark Godsil in honor of Celia’s career as a public school teacher and their belief in the importance of classroom teachers to rural communities. Learn more about the program here!
In your region, we are excited to share with you that Carlin Smock’s project has been selected to be a Celia B. Godsil Grants in Place Fellow for the 2022-23 school year.
Carlin Fleming-Smock is in her 13th year of teaching high school social studies. Carlin grew up in Carmi, Illinois, and three years ago had the privilege of moving back home and teaching at her home high school. She is currently on the board of the White County Historical Society, which inspired her to begin a history club at the high school: the CWC Historians. Currently, with close to 50 members, the club has been extremely active in both the school district and community in promoting the community’s local history. History is truly a passion of Carlin’s! When Carlin is not teaching or working in one of the museums, she loves to play golf with her husband and spend time with their two kids, Bradley and Hendrix. This spring, Carlin is starting a graduate program to gain her Masters in American History through The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History and Gettysburg College in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.
Carmi, Illinois, is not unlike most small, rural towns – with a population of about 5,000 people, it is hard for the Historical Society to keep their museums open to the public as often as the society would like. This inspired Carlin to create this project as a Fellow, A Walking Tour of White County History. With this project, Carlin’s students will be creating short video tours of 5 of the most prominent historical sites in Carmi, Illinois. Once completed, these will be uploaded online and connected to QR Codes that will be printed on plaques and placed outside of the various locations. Carlin and her students’ vision is that people can visit the locations, and even if they are not open, and can scan the QR code to learn more about that particular historic site. Videos will include the history of the buildings, themselves, as well as information and shots of what one can find inside the building. Students will do the research with information provided, speak with locals who know about the sites, and create the scripts and videos. Carlin and her students are super excited to begin this project and share their passion for their community’s history with many.