When Literature Has Life – Senior Students Explore The Context Behind Class Reading

Mr. Travis’ senior English class read through the classic American novel, “The Things They Carried” by author Tim O’Brien.


In an effort to understand the context of what the platoon of American soldiers might have felt in the Vietnam war, the class took a trip to the American Freedom Museum where museum historian and curriculum coordinator, Robin Bynum, answered questions and led the students through a discussion of what a soldier might have physically and emotionally carried during the war.

Students had the opportunity to spend time exploring the exhibit and then create their own questions based on what they had observed from both their reading in class and the exhibit itself. For further context, students were allowed to try on fatigues, hold rockets, and touch shrapnel as Mrs. Bynum shared stories from veterans who had carried each of these things.