SPS Juniors Experience History First-Hand

(NEW ORLEANS) — The St. Paul’s junior class toured the National World War II Museum in New Orleans on Thursday, Jan. 14, as the annual field trip for the junior level American History class.

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Fighter aircraft engage in a frozen dogfight above the floor of Boeing Center (museum photo )

“We are so fortunate to have the World War II Museum so close to us in New Orleans,” American History teacher Kim Gardner said. “SPS juniors get the incredible opportunity to view authentic primary source documents and film that enhances their ability to study and appreciate our country’s role in World War II.”

The museum is divided into eight main exhibits that the students were able to visit during their tour: the Campaigns of Courage, the Boeing Center, the Louisiana Memorial Pavilion, the John E. Kushner Restoration Pavilion, the Merchant Marine Gallery, and the 4D film,Beyond All Boundaries.” Campaigns of Courage and “Beyond All Boundaries” were crowd favorites.

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“Beyond All Boundaries” includes images of tiny soldiers representing the countries of Japan, America, and Germany. Each little soldier represents 2,000 real soldiers who fought and were killed in action during the war. (file photo by Stephen Hammond)

 “I think that the ‘Beyond All Boundaries’ film was the highlight of most people’s trip, junior Max Tepper said.It really had an interesting angle as (the movie) showed how and why ordinary Americans gave up their normal lives to go and fight for their country when they were needed.”

While Campaigns of Courage is a compilation of smaller exhibits focused primarily on the European and Pacific fronts of World War II, “Beyond All Boundaries” is a 4D film that gave an abridged version of the events of World War II and is narrated by actor Tom Hanks. 

“History is just so important and crucial for students to know and understand,” said junior counselor Christine Woodard, “and when you have such an amazing facility so close to us, it’s just a great opportunity for our students to get to go there and try to broaden their historical horizons by putting a foot in the door of this turbulent and all-important time period.”

This year's crop of SPS juniors were the first to visit the newly opened Road to Tokyo exhibit. (museum photo)

Although the field trip to the National WWII Museum is an annual event for the SPS junior class, this year’s crop of students were the first to visit the newly opened Road to Tokyo exhibit, which opened on Dec. 11, 2015, and retraces the events and evolving military strategies that led from Pearl Harbor to Tokyo Bay. (museum photo)

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