Two Cartersville museums are teaming up to offer home-schoolers a program on the people who are indigenous to the United States.
The Booth Western Art Museum and the Bartow History Museum are hosting America’s Native Peoples, a program for Home-School Day, Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Booth at 501 Museum Drive and at the history museum at 4 E. Church St.
Both institutions will enable home-schoolers ages 5 and older to learn about the history and arts of the Cherokee and Creek before the Indian Removal Act of 1830, which authorized the president to negotiate with southern Native American tribes for their removal to federal territory west of the Mississippi River in exchange for their lands, and the American Indians of the West.
"You can’t talk about the history of Bartow County without including the important contributions of the Creek and the Cherokee," BHM Program Manager Joshua Graham said. "Likewise, the Booth has such a wonderful collection of Western art that includes American Indian art and artifacts. We really just thought there are few topics that we can show the community at such a high quality and with so many great examples in our collections. Additionally, while there are so many interesting aspects to these parts of history, it also contains topics that parents may find difficult to present, and we want to help support them as they do so."
Patty Dees, director of education at the Booth, said providing a "variety of educational opportunities to the home-school community" is an important piece of the museum’s mission.
"The Booth provides Home-School Fridays — small-group art lessons offered at Booth Art Academy on the first Friday of the month — and two large-group activities inclusive of home-school families each year," she said. "America’s Native Peoples is the fall large-group offering that is presented in conjunction with Bartow History Museum."
Joining forces on the program allows the institutions to "not only highlight two great museums in the Cartersville community but to also promote the collaboration of the arts and humanities," Dees said.
"American Indians is a popular topic for all ages," she said. "The diverse collection of American Indian art and artifacts at both museums naturally lent itself to the development of a fun, content-rich program. American Indian culture is rich and diverse and should be explored through a local, regional and national lens."
Graham said the two museums "share a commitment to the community and a commitment to education."
"We want to make sure everyone in the area feels like they can enjoy our museums and really learn about our local and national history through our collections," he said, noting the Booth is a "great museum" with an "amazingly dedicated education team." "By offering this joint program, we really want all families to take the time they need to see as many aspects of this important topic as they can."
The two institutions will highlight content and hands-on activities that are specific to their own collection.
"Each museum will have multiple unique stations set up, talking about different aspects of American Indian history and the connection Bartow and surrounding counties have to that history," Graham said, noting he will be leading the BHM program. "At the Bartow History Museum, we will be looking at the difference between some Cherokee and Creek homes, Cherokee dress and home life and the Cherokee syllabary."
Museum educators and docents at the Booth will help students learn about the tribes of the West and the culture of the western band of the Cherokee through art and hands-on activities, Dees said.
"Booth Western Art Museum will provide a hands-on art station where participants will learn about plant dyes and create a paper weaving," she said. "A bison box object-handling station will also be offered. Students will … participate in American Indian games [and] create a paper craft home. These are just a few of the interactive activities provided."
Dees wants the program to ignite an interest in the story of the country's aboriginal inhabitants for the young people who attend.
"I hope it inspires students to want to learn even more about the diversity of American Indian cultures, including different traditions, art, food, clothing and homes," she said.
The cost of the Booth program is $5 for home-schooled students and $3 for adults. Registration is required for groups of 10 or more and can be done by emailing email@example.com or calling 770-387-3849.
For the history museum, admission is $5 for home-schooled students and $4 for adults. Registration is not required for groups smaller than 10, although it is suggested. Call 770-382-3818, ext. 6288, or email firstname.lastname@example.org for reservations.
The Booth also is having an event later this month to recognize all active and retired educators.
The staff is planning Educator Night at the Booth for Thursday, Sept. 20, from 5 to 8 p.m. to give teachers and administrators a relaxing evening of fun.
"Educator Night at the Booth is a way for us to say thank you to the educators in our community," Dees said. "We want to provide a relaxed atmosphere for educators to view the museum and take part in some special programming, like an exclusive gallery walk of our newest exhibition, 'Treasures from the Frederic Remington Art Museum & Beyond.'"
Educators will be admitted free and can participate in one, two or all three of the evening's activities — the gallery walk at 5:15 p.m., drinks and light hors d’oeuvres at 6 p.m. and a lecture/performance by author Michael F. Blake on Theodore Roosevelt's West in the theater at 7 p.m.
"Michael will become the 26th president right in front of the audience," Dees said.
Those planning to attend are required to RSVP by Wednesday to email@example.com.