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What have we been working on?

Columbus Signature Academy, Fodrea Campus. Columbus, Indiana. Photograph by Carol Highsmith, Library of Congress.

We’ve been a bit quiet since November but we are continuing to work on building the Local Preservation School.

The past few months we have built a few online resources that we plan to incorporate into Local Preservation School teaching materials:

With both the directory and the map, our goal is to connect interested learners with to preservation advocates who are already working in their local communities. If you have any suggestions for “house history” guides that we missed on our map or online communities we missed in the directory, please let us know.

In June, we are launching our first class: Explore Baltimore Heritage 101. This free four-week class is designed to teach people how to research and write about historic places in Baltimore. By teaching this class in-person, we expect to learn a lot about what works and what doesn’t when trying to teach neighborhoods how to tell stories about local landmarks. Student input will help us shape a revised of the class designed to be broadly relevant to residents in historic communities across the country.

In August, we are planning to start a series of workshops—what we are calling Local Preservation School “study groups”—where we can meet with local preservation advocates (both volunteers and professionals) to talk about the value of open educational resources and collaborate on the creation of new lessons and tutorials. These workshops are inspired by other open educational programs and collaborative writing events like Mozilla Study Groups, School of Data’s Data Expeditions, Wikipedia Edit-a-thons, and Maptime’s local meetups.

You can read and comment on our workshop plan and stay tuned for possible workshops this fall in New York and Philadelphia. If you are interested in hosting a Local Preservation School Study Group, we’d love to talk to you.