As a way of kicking off their social studies on the Revolutionary War, fourth graders were treated to a virtual tour of Saint Paul’s Church in Mount Vernon. Since 1665, the national historic site has played a vital role in the area, originally serving as a church for colonists and later as a hospital during the Revolutionary War.
“During the field trip, we got to learn the history of Saint Paul’s, including seeing images of the way it was designed to best suit the needs of the colonial people,” teacher Heather DeCurtis said. “We also learned about its role in the Revolutionary War and the ways in which it functioned as a hospital to injured soldiers. Lastly, we got a glimpse at some of the tombstones at the church, dating back to the early 1700s.”
DeCurtis said her students learned interesting facts about the lives of the people buried in the tombstones and what historians have been able to learn about them. It’s believed that the oldest tombstone in the state of New York is located at Saint Paul’s.
“The field trip does a great job of making a big concept, like the Revolutionary War, feel a little more realistic to students,” DeCurtis said. “Hearing stories and seeing artifacts from that time period, as well as knowing there’s a physical place so close by that was part of the war, helps students connect to the information we learn.”
Over the next several weeks, students will dive more deeply into the Revolutionary War to learn about its causes and the important battles fought in New York State.