18 May 5th Grade Visit to the Oregon State Capitol
After months of study on our nation’s beginnings and the formation of our government, the 5th grade students journeyed to our state’s capitol to visit the Capitol Building. The students began their docent-guided tour by stopping at the rotunda and learning about Oregon’s great seal. Because the legislatures were in session, we were able to observe both the House of Representatives and the Senate floor and were formally greeted in both. While in the congressional halls, our docent encouraged us to observe names etched into the stone walls, and we were able to connect many figures in our literary and historical lessons to Oregon’s own history, including Joaquin Miller (author of the great poem Columbus), Washington Irving (author of Rip Van Winkle), and of course, names like Thomas Jefferson, and Lewis and Clark. We ended the tour by climbing the many steps to the top of the rotunda to learn about the Oregon Pioneer and had many questions answered about our local government while enjoying the panoramic view. After a stop at a replica of the Liberty Bell (commemorating America’s bicentennial) and a picnic lunch, we stood outside the Capitol Building to recite the Declaration of Independence, reminding ourselves and those who listened, about the foundational truths that have marked our country since its birth.