History project wins 3 Parker students a trip to NYC

Three Parker Junior High students and their teachers will be making a trip to New York City to see the musical “Hamilton” as guests of the Hamilton production and the Gilder Lehrman Institute.

Seventh graders Simon Reyes, Braylen Brewer and Tyler Harris are excited to be the winners in the nationwide competition. Their winning skit has them portraying three revolutionaries masquerading as Native Americans. They get on board a ship docked in Boston Harbor and throw a shipment of tea overboard in protest of the taxes the British government was imposing.

Their 2-minute skit was one of 10 Parker student projects submitted into the competition. Judges selected 20 student projects from across the country as winners for this special trip.

All student projects had to focus on an event around the time Alexander Hamilton lived, 1755-1804. Tyler, Simon and Braylen all say they knew of the Boston Tea Party, but in preparing for their skit they each said they learned new information.

A winning skit created by Parker Junior High seventh graders, from left, Braylen Brewer, Simon Reyes and Tyler Harris won them a trip to New York to see the musical “Hamilton.” (Marilyn Thomas/H-F Chronicle)

Humanities teacher Linda O’Dwyer worked with her colleagues Emily Nicotra and Huda Hussein to incorporate the Hamilton Education Program materials into English/Language Arts, humanities and social studies curriculums. The EduHamOnline website offered extensive resources covering 45 founding era figures, 14 events, 24 key documents, plus 175 supporting documents and “Hamilton” video clips.

The educational program, begun in 2016, has a goal of reaching 250,000 students and teachers. 

“We’re consistently impressed by the creativity and outstanding performances that students showcase through EduHam, and we’re honored to play a role in their educational journey,” said Jeffrey Seller, producer of “Hamilton.”

 “The big deal was they had to use primary sources that were from this period for it to be a valid program,” O’Dwyer said.  The project included not just a skit or song but research that “required students to cite those topics when creating their skit or scene.”

The teachers were happy to find a new way to teach this period of history, rather than use a textbook. The students got to select a topic and create a project.

 O’Dwyer said the possibility of winning an all-expenses paid trip to New York was a great incentive for the students. They will be accompanied by family members and the three Parker teachers for their stay May 7, 8 and 9.

They will tour the Richard Rogers Theater and see a presentation of “Hamilton.” Students will get to interact with the cast members after the performance. 

“I’ve heard many great things about it (the musical), and I’ve heard the music. I’m looking forward to it,” Tyler said.

 O’Dwyer also is planning additional stops at the Statue of Liberty and the 9-11 Memorial.

News by email

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Free weekly newsletter

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.
Most read stories this week