Staples Students Make History

Sam Cooke didn’t know much about history.

Staples High School students do. And a high-powered panel of experts is singing their praises.

logo (1)Last weekend, a couple hundred 10th graders from throughout Fairfield County presented projects at the “History Day in Connecticut” contest. Staples produced a phenomenal 30 gold, silver and bronze winners. They took every prize in 5 of the 8 categories, and placed in 2 of the other 3.

But they didn’t just win. One of the contest judges expressed amazement at the “quality of thought” from the Staples participants.

And a professor from Arizona State University — an awed observer —  said,”I wish my university seniors could display the insight these high school sophomores exhibited in their presentations.”

Many Westporters don't know that PT Barnum was a  very effective mayor of Bridgeport. Staples sophomores do.

Many Westporters don’t know that PT Barnum was a very effective mayor of Bridgeport. Staples sophomores do.

Students could choose any historical topic: local, national, even world.

Projects included the gun industry in Connecticut, child labor laws, the achievement gap, PT Barnum’s effect on Bridgeport, the Jewish history of Waterbury, the Interstate Highway Act and the Radium Girls.

Congratulations to Staples’ outstanding history students:

1st place: Sarah Benjamin, Jillian Kleiner, Madison Jarvis, Rebecca Oestreicher, Kyle Ratner, Nick Ribolla, Maddy Fodor, Angela Yu, Arjun Dhindsa.

2nd place: Jane Schutte, Miranda Saunders, Jon Dedomenico, Katherine Hertan, Ruth Kissel, Emma Finn, Talia Hendel, Aaron Samuels, George Menz, Jackson Daines, Raymond Chien, Simon Ginsberg.

3rd place: Emma Lederer, Caroline Suppan, Ben Goldstein, Eliana Aronson, Jennifer Martin, Susan Zec, Anna Eichhorn, Doug Raigosa, Georgia Fox.

(History Day in Connecticut’s regional contest was co-sponsored by Fairfield University’s Department of History, and the Graduate School of Education and Allied Professions. All students listed above advance to the state History Day Contest on April 26, at Central Connecticut State University.)

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9 responses to “Staples Students Make History

  1. Kathie Bennewitz

    WOW–This is really remarkable and also points to the strong skills in writing and presentation being developed across the courses at Staples. Maybe I can recruit some of them to help interpret the Lambdin mural of Saugatuck!

  2. If everyone were this well educated, “What a wonderful world it would be.”

  3. What a great day for Staples and for the ENTIRE Westport public education system. Say what you want about Westport having the highest-paid Superintendent in the State, but the results speak volumes.

  4. Fantastic.. I would love to know who the teachers were of the students who inspired this love of history. It takes a special department head, and teachers (and obviously parents) to do that.

  5. Nina Sankovitch

    Let’s not forget the great teachers who got the kids excited and supported them all the way there! Big thanks to Sara Pinchback and Lauren Francese.

  6. Blair Satter

    I am President of The Coastal Chordsmen an a cappella chorus based in Trumbull. I am proud to say that we had the privilage of performing their. Also one of our members was one of the organizers of the event.

  7. James Banbury

    Great Job Ben Goldstien

  8. As organizers of history day in CT, we at CT’s Old State House are thrilled to hear about your great experience! We’re finishing up the District contests in other areas of the state and look forward to seeing you all at the state contest on April 26! To learn more about go to the HIstory Day in CT website: day And a big THANK YOU to CT Humanities, who provide major funding to History Day in CT!