Education News for May 2023

Milo Lemert

In honor of Memorial Day, this primary source is the Gold Star record for a World War I Medal of Honor recipient from Crossville, TN. Milo Lemert was a 28-year-old farmer before enlisting in the United States Army in June 1917. He was killed in action in Bellicourt, France on September 29, 1918, after charging an enemy emplacement. These heroic actions posthumously earned Lemert the Medal of Honor. Five other Tennesseans, including Alvin C. York, received Medal of Honor awards for their actions during the Great War, though Lemert was the only recipient killed in action. 
This featured primary source is from the TSLA Tennessee World War I Gold Star Records collection. The gold star became a national symbol of mourning and patriotic pride as fierce fighting and the Influenza Epidemic of 1918 claimed more American lives than any conflict in living memory since the Civil War.  Tennessee Gold Star Records were compiled in the 1920s from information gathered from the soldiers’ families. Depending on the soldier, these records may include letters, newspaper articles, diaries, and photographs. 
This source meets the 5.49 and US.25 Tennessee social studies standards.
Visit our website for more primary sources on World War I.
Click here to access the Library & Archives’ Tennessee World War I Gold Star Records collection.

Discover Tennessee History Educator Survey 

    Teachers! We need your feedback! Last opportunity!
The Tennessee State Library & Archives and our partners in the Discover Tennessee History consortium are exploring ways to better serve teachers in Tennessee. We understand the classroom environment has changed in the last few years. Therefore we would like to hear from all of you on what professional development you may need for the classroom. In order to do this, we are conducting a survey to ask teachers about their current needs. If you’ve not already done so, please complete this survey so we can gather the data, evaluate it, and implement new strategies in an effort to improve resources for educators.

Trailblazing Tennesseans: People Who Made History in the Volunteer State

Please join us for our 2022-2023 teacher workshop series, Trailblazing Tennesseans: People Who Made History in the Volunteer State. This workshop series will feature activities and primary sources corresponding to the Tennessee Social Studies Standards.

This is the final session for the 2022-2023 school year!! This session will be held on Tuesday, June 6, 2023, at the Falling Water River Regional Library, 208 Minnear Street, Cookeville, TN 38501. Workshop time:  9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Visit our website for registration information.

Digital Breakouts

For an engaging, fun way to end the school year, check out our primary source-based online digital breakouts for grades K - 12. Digital breakouts are tools for educators that use primary and secondary sources to help students learn the concepts of specific Tennessee Social Studies curriculum standards. 

Our digital breakouts include topics such as Tennessee Symbols (K-2), Battle of Shiloh, Agriculture, Coal Creek Labor Saga, Woman Suffrage, Civil War, and more!

Click here to check out our digital breakouts.

Message from the Education Outreach Coordinator

Teachers, you continue to impress us with all the amazing work you’ve done this year! I hope we are able to see some of you at our summer teacher programming! When school returns next August, keep in mind that we’ll have our DocsBoxes available, we’ll start up another statewide workshop series in September, and we’ll offer another webinar series next school year. Look for an email in early August with all of our offerings for the 2023-2024 school year!

Thank you for all the important work you do to serve our communities in Tennessee!

Have a great summer!

Kelly Wilkerson

Tennessee Electronic Library (TEL)

Teachers continue to take advantage of the many resources of the Tennessee Electronic Library (TEL). TEL is an online library that gives Tennessee residents access to magazines, journals, newspapers, essays, e-books, primary source materials, test preparation, homework help, genealogy records, career search, and more! TEL resources are available free to the public from any computer with Internet access in Tennessee.

One of the new TEL resources, PebbleGo, was featured in our January 2023 newsletter. PebbleGo is a great online research database for Tennessee’s youngest learners – Kindergarten thru 2nd/3rd grade. It’s a fun and interactive research space with great educational content. Tennesseans now have access to PebbleGo modules in science and social studies. All the read-aloud components are read by English and Spanish speakers to model reading fluency. Teachers and parents can look up Tennessee Curriculum Standards to see which articles and activities help to support the various standards. 

To access the Tennessee Electronic Library, go to:

On This Day in History

May 1, 1897
The Tennessee Centennial and International Exposition opened in Nashville, in what is now Centennial Park. A year late, it celebrated the 100th anniversary of Tennessee's entry into the union in 1796. President William McKinley officially opened the event from the White House, where he pressed a button that started the machinery building at the fair. It remained open until October 31, 1897.

May 22, 1819
Future President Andrew Jackson founded the city of Memphis on May 22, 1819, along with John Overton and James Winchester. They named it after the ancient Egyptian city of Memphis – meaning “place of good abode” – which was located at the head of the Nile River Delta.

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