The George Bush Presidential Library and Museum and Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content for K-12 classrooms, are partnering for the second year in a row to present a unique distance learning opportunity for students across the globe
The Ninth Annual Reading Discovery Program is planned for 10am, Thursday, January 28, at the George Bush Presidential Library’s Annenberg Presidential Conference Center and will be live-streamed to classrooms worldwide.
During the program via a video feed, former First Lady Barbara Bush will introduce the program’s theme of freedom’s importance. She also will reflect on a “new breeze of democracy” that began during her husband’s presidency with the fall of the Berlin Wall, which symbolized the end of the Cold War.
President and Mrs. Bush’s daughter, Doro Bush Koch, will answer some questions during the global videoconference. There also will be a Q&A session with students from across the United States and Germany, a country once divided into a Communist east and a democratic west. Discovery Education’s Hall Davidson and Annett Kresser, a former East German citizen who escaped to the West during the Cold War, will answer questions.
This is also the official launch of a new interactive learning game app called “Cold War Dare.” Set in the Cold War era, the game challenges students to act as the president and make decisions based on real historical events during a time when people of East Germany and Eastern Europe were seeking freedom and greater rights in their lives. It is a strategy game to be available free of charge at the Apple Store (iPad or iPhone), Google Play (tablet or Android) or at www.connect2texas.net/bush41.
Guided by Davidson, students will experience reading material coming to life through dynamic digital resources such as interactive apps and computer-generated technology. Davidson will lead participants in a demonstration of augmented reality technology, which allows students to overlay digital information, such as engaging videos, audio and graphics, on any image being viewed through a device, such as a smartphone.
Joining Davidson on stage will be elementary students from College Station Independent School District and Houston Independent School District, who will share the content they have created to enhance images and texts related to the Cold War and the Berlin Wall using augmented reality technology.
“Dynamic digital content, professional development and resources give us the chance to reach every kind of reader and every kind of learner,” says Davidson. “Educational technology has the power to bring excitement and discovery to the traditional printed word.”
Kresser, who escaped from East Germany, will tell her powerful personal story and experiences as she dared to risk her life to gain freedom. ”Education without freedom is not worth much for an individual’s life and happiness,” says Kresser. “For me, education opened my desire and my hunger for freedom. Finally, my good education enabled and allowed me to establish myself in a free society and to live a self-determined, free, and happy life.”
The Reading Discovery Distance Learning Program and Videoconference is the most popular education program offered by Bush 41. To register for the event, visit http://www.connect2texas.net/Connect2Texas_pages/register_begin.asp?eventID=25626