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The Road to Little Rock project began in 2010 and has progressed and evolved in a number of phases. Now, nearly four years later, this inspiring story of nine students and one judge has reached thousands of students and others. Since the start of the project, more than 5,000 individuals have watched the video presentation, heard the thoughtful words of Dr. Terrence Roberts, one of the Little Rock Nine, and had the opportunity to reflect on this fascinating piece of our history.
Phase I – Plan and Educate. The North Dakota Humanities Council provided the first of three project grants to sponsor an outdoor “rocking chair” symposium that was held in August 2011 at the Trollwood Performing Arts School as part of the dedication activities for the opening of Judge Ronald N. Davies High School in South Fargo. Over 500 individuals attended, raising the awareness for Judge Davies’ historic ruling in the Fargo-Moorhead community.
Phase II – Premier. The Road to Little Rock video was produced and the curriculum written. Two video premiers were held. The first was at the Historic Fargo Theatre where over 800 individuals attended the event on January 24, 2013. The Arkansas premier was held in Little Rock, Arkansas at Philander Smith College, one of four Historic Black Colleges and Universities in Arkansas on March 19, 2013.
Phase III – Inspire. Between September 20–24, 2013, project premiers were held in Bismarck in conjunction with the Annual Governor’s Conference and sponsored by the State Historical Society of North Dakota; at UND’s Chester Fritz Auditorium in Grand Forks; again at the Historic Fargo Theatre; and in Detroit Lakes at the Historic Holmes Theatre for 1,500 secondary students from Pelican Rapids and Detroit Lakes, Minnesota. During these four events, over 4,000 individuals saw The Road to Little Rock video and heard from Dr. Terrence Roberts, one of the Little Rock Nine.
Phase IV – Implement. The Road to Little Rock curriculum and video was distributed to North Dakota and Arkansas schools. North Dakota schools may access the curriculum at http://nd.theroadtolittlerock.org.
Phase V – Evaluate. This will be the final evaluation where curriculum quality will be evaluated in the following ways: (1) two curriculum experts will be invited to evaluate The Road to Little Rock based upon qualities of effective curriculum; (2) development of an evaluation guide based on research-based best practices in history education; (3) students will be asked their perceptions of the curriculum on the post-measure of knowledge and attitudes; (4) teachers who administer the curriculum will be asked to evaluate the curriculum using the evaluation guide created by the curriculum experts; and, (5) teachers will also be asked to complete a curriculum evaluation.