Smyrna Elementary Students Fly Back in History, Debut Amelia Earhart Museum

Smyrna Elementary students perform for parents and visitors inside the Amelia Earhart Museum that they constructed inside target teacher Lisa Rogers’ classroom on December 18.

Breaking news! The search for the famed Amelia Earhart is over. Clad in her traditional leather boots and black goggles, Earhart was recently discovered inside Smyrna Elementary School where she was educating students and parents about her historical role as a boundary-breaking female aviator.

As visitors tour the student-built Amelia Earhart Museum on December 18, Smyrna Elementary School first grader Anna dressed up as Amelia Earhart and recounted historical facts about the famed aviator.

Although standing significantly shorter than records indicate, Earhart welcomed school visitors to the Amelia Earhart museum. Smyrna Elementary students designed the museum inside their classroom as a way to pay tribute to the aviator and her accomplishments. The museum also highlighted what the students have learned over the past few months.

In actuality, the person behind the black aviator goggles wasn’t Earhart. It was first grader Anna, who imagines herself to be a little like the real Amelia Earhart.

“[Amelia] was not afraid to be like a boy,” explained Anna, wearing the goggles pushed up on the brown aviator hat atop her head. “She knew women could do anything. I think she inspired a lot of people who were too shy to do what they believed in. I think she spoke for a lot of people who couldn’t speak for themselves.”

Anna’s classmates also recognized Earhart for being a pioneer.

“[Amelia Earhart] was really special because she said women could do anything,” echoed first grader Ian.

As visitors tour the student-built Amelia Earhart Museum, a Smyrna Elementary School student explains the flight paths of the famed aviator.

Ian served as a student historian to provide museum visitors with details about Amelia’s plane, Friendship, which she flew across the Atlantic Ocean and made history as the first female pilot to do so. Ian’s fascination wasn’t with the plane, or the items he helped compile for the time-period medical kit on display inside the museum.

“I liked learning that she drank hot chocolate and oranges when she flew,” Ian revealed.

Ian and Anna’s other classmates provided audio tours and demonstrations inside the museum. One student explained the route Earhart took on her history-making flights while another talked to parents about what inspired the famed aviator to take flight.

Ron Day, Anna’s dad, thinks the hands-on learning that created the student museum helped his daughter relate to and retain the information.

“She is excited to learn now,” said Day whose daughter was still in character as Amelia Earhart. “When she comes home, she actually tells us things that she is learning about.”

He also credited the months-long Amelia Earhart lesson with sparking his daughter’s imagination.

The educator helping the students’ imaginations to take flight is target teacher Lisa Rogers, who has been amazed by her first graders’ writings about the historic aviator. Rogers viewed the hands-on lessons as an opportunity for the students to take charge of their own learning. She also hoped that studying Amelia Earhart would inspire her students.

“I think it is very important to let kids to know that they can do anything once they put their mind to it,” Rogers added.

Go inside the Amelia Earhart Museum with this Cobb edTV video: