This Week’s Anton Lesson Plan
Long Island is a fountainhead of history and while local newspapers are more often than not in the business of keeping up with current events, yesterday’s events can become today’s news. One example would be how Jericho’s Milleridge Inn, which dates back to 1672, was in danger of being closed down after it was purchased by a shopping center owner. Because this is a business that affects the local economy and because it is a Long Island landmark, it garnered a significant amount of news coverage.
With this prime example of why history shouldn’t be relegated to being some dusty relic on the shelf, an exercise you can go over with your students can focus on a number of significant Long Island sites. Oyster Bay’s Sagamore Hill, the home of President Teddy Roosevelt that is on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places, has been the subject of major renovations. Mitchel Field, a former Air Force base located on the Hempstead Plains, is currently a multi-use complex with a significant pedigree dating back to 1918. Jones Beach State Park is approaching its centennial and is a major feature of the Long Island landscape despite only being 6.5 miles in length. Larger than Central Park, Eisenhower Park and its 930 acres has been at the epicenter of the county parks system since 1944. Another significant structure is Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, the former multi-purpose indoor arena in Uniondale that’s getting ready to be relaunched as a smaller venue.
Students can write up brief summaries about each of these locations while answering a series of questions. How did these historical areas come into being? How long they have they been in existence? What is going on there in this current day and age? List three significant events or facts pertaining to each site. This is an exercise that can be done by individual students or as part of a group.