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Do Your Students Have What It Takes to Lead a Nation?

Mount Vernon has a new interactive exhibit—one that allows students to step into George Washington’s boots and see if they have what it takes to lead as Washington led.

Be Washington is a new experience in which students come face-to-face with a leadership challenge that George Washington confronted either as commander-in-chief of the continental army during the Revolutionary War or as the first president of the United States.

In the 20-minute activity, students listen to advice from Washington’s most trusted sources, such as Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson, Stacy Potts and Julius Caesar. The sources offer contradictory opinions—and students will not have time to listen to them all. Just like Washington, students must make their decision under pressure, and as the situation continues to evolve.

Students offer their own input on one of four key events that helped shaped U.S. history: the Battle of Second Trenton, the Newburgh Conspiracy, the Genet Affair or the Whiskey Rebellion. They are able to see how their decisions could potentially affect the outcome.

Be Washington is a docent-led activity, free with general admission to Mount Vernon. Students sit at 17th-century writing desks with individualized screens in an interactive theater. Educators and students can also play online at www.bewashington.org.

From leading a revolution to helping form a new nation, Be Washington allows students to test their leadership and decision-making skills while engaging history. Do your students have what it takes? 

Written by Hemisphere Educational Travel

Photo courtesy of Mt. Vernon