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Throughout the history of DAR education has always been one of the main focuses of the mission of the organization. The DAR is passionate about educating America’s youth and supports a variety of different programs, contests and awards to help further this goal. Learn about different educational initiatives DAR chapters are involved with.

Education

Visiting Local Schools

During a 2003 visit, Oregon State Registrar Nedra Brill, also a member of the Portland Chapter in Oregon, uses the map behind her to explain the westward expansion of the United States to the first grade class at Tucker-Maxon Oral School.  The private school for hearing-impaired children is a recipient of yearly donations from the chapter.  Photo courtesy of Portland Chapter

Education

Book Donations

Instead of exchanging gifts at Christmas, members of the Aloha Chapter gave fifty-eight books, plus puzzles and pencils to the Family Library of the Mayor Wright Homes public housing community in Honolulu.  In addition, the chapter’s Daughters presented a $482 check to Katy Chen (seated at left), Executive Director of Hawaii Literacy, Inc.  “I had heard wonderful things about the program and felt our contribution could help in their efforts,” elaborated Jeanie Bouthillier, Aloha Chapter DAR Literacy Challenge chairman (pictured in the Hawaii DAR t-shirt).  Sales of the t-shirts also helped raise funds for the gifts.  Some of the children who use the library also joined Hawaii State Regent Diane Hom (seated in back second from right) and Lani Almanza, Family Literacy Program Manager.  Founded in 1897, before Hawaii’s statehood, the chapter chose the name “Aloha” as a symbol of relations between the United States and Hawaii at that time.  Eleven of its thirteen charter members were missionaries.  The early days of the Aloha Chapter focused on patriotic activities:  celebrating Revolutionary anniversaries; ministering to the needs of soldiers on their way to the Philippines; proper use and respect for the Flag; and patriotic essays in the public schools.  Today, the chapter remains an active participant in community activities and, because of its geographic location, the chapter is particularly active in promoting Americanism and assisting those interested in becoming citizens.  Since its founding, the chapter has provided $400,000 in scholarships and loans through its Hawaii Student Loan Fund.  Photo by Elaine Olson

Education

National Scholarships

Shiloh Wersen (left) and Andrew Bratten, both of Salisbury, Maryland, and both sponsored by the Samuel Chase Chapter, show off the certificates noting their selection as DAR national scholarship winners.  Shiloh, who is pursuing a major in vocal performance, was the first winner of the new Nellie Love Butcher Scholarship, a $5,000 award given to a student pursuing an education in piano or voice.  Andrew won the Lillian and Arthur Dunn Scholarship, reserved for deserving sons and daughters of members of the NSDAR.  He will receive $2,000 for up to four years and beyond.  Nearly all DAR scholarships bear the names of Daughters or donors whose generosity has funded endowments that allow the NSDAR to award some $1 million in scholarships annually for academic excellence, students with special learning challenges, as well as those with financial need.  Convention Photography Services photo

Education

The Pledge of Allegiance

Colorado State Regent Donna Bottini hands out flags and certificates of accomplishment to a local preschooler in this 2005 photo.  Bottini’s goal during her tenure as State Regent is to hand out flags and certificates to every kindergarten student in Colorado who learns the Pledge of Allegiance.  Photo courtesy Donna Bottini

Education

Constitution Week

A young art enthusiast inspects the painting, The Signing of the Constitution, by renowned artist Louis S. Glanzman, a gift commissioned by several DAR state societies commemorating the celebration of the Bicentennial of the U.S. Constitution in 1987.  DAR members and national officers, including President General Ann D. Fleck, assembled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to present the painting and to participate in a variety of special events that year.  The painting hangs in Independence Hall in Philadelphia.

Education

DAR Schools

The collaborative efforts of the first DAR schools proved so successful that at one time the National Society supported as many as thirty-five schools, such as the Missionary School for Girls whose 1919 graduating class is pictured here.   Other DAR supported schools included Saint Mary’s and the Commonwealth School for Boys.  As public schooling became more accessible, the Daughters shifted their support to other aspects of their substantial mission of preservation and patriotism as well as education.  By 1934, the Continental Congress voted to limit the number of approved schools to seventeen and, in 1940, they resolved that as vacancies occurred, no new schools would be added.

Education

American History Essay Contest

Theopholus William Krug wrote this award-winning essay, “Trials and Triumphs of America,” for the first DAR American History contest in 1898.  As his reward, Krug received $5 from the New York Daughters.  The original copy of the essay is part of a display in the Americana Room that also highlights other previous local winners prior to the mid-1950s, when individual DAR chapters and state organizations presented their own unique awards to students for writing on American history topics.  Today, through a nationally coordinated program that encourages youngsters to learn about history in a new light, more than 4,000 schools participate in this annual contest for students in grades 5-8, with nearly 66,000 essays submitted yearly. 

Education

American History Essay Contest

Madeline Iles, of Natchez, Mississippi, sponsored by the William Dunbar Chapter, holds the certificate presented to her at the 114th Continental Congress as fifth-grade winner of the National American History Essay Contest.  In her acceptance speech, she particularly thanked her history teacher:  “She spent many hours outside of class this year working to inspire her students to love and understand the importance of history.” Convention Photography Services photo

Education

Outstanding Teacher of American History

Every year since 1982, the National Society has honored teachers of American History and related fields for their service.  Gail K. Chumbley, sponsored by the Pioneer Chapter in Idaho, was honored at the 114th Continental Congress as the DAR National Outstanding Teacher of American history.  In addition to initiating a program in her eleventh grade classes to record the oral histories of World War II soldiers and Navy pilots as part of the Library of Congress Oral History Project, in 1999 she and her students raised $25,000 for the World War II Memorial in Washington, more than any other school in the country.  She and two of her students attended the 2000 groundbreaking.  In Chumbley’s remarks to the Daughters at Congress, she noted:  “You and I are on the same path.  Strength in science, math, and even in literature has its place, but if our students are unaware of who they are as Americans, [do not] understand the glue that holds our nation together, the other disciplines are moot.  We cease to be a distinct people without a shared past.” Photo courtesy of Idaho Statesman

Education

Junior American Citizens

President General Patricia W. Shelby presents awards to three outstanding Junior American Citizens in her office during the 1983 Continental Congress. 

Education

ROTC Medals

Keri Sims, of the Navy JROTC at La Vega High School in Bellmead, Texas, accepts the 2003 NSDAR Reserve Officer Training Corps medal and certificate from Linda Wyllie Totten, National Defense chairman of the Elizabeth Gordon Bradley Chapter in Waco, Texas.  Sims also received a $150,000 U.S. Navy scholarship to Texas A&M University at the May 8, 2003, JROTC awards night at the high school.  Presented by the NSDAR National Defense Committee, the ROTC medals recognize graduating cadets in secondary schools, junior colleges and universities who fulfill the qualities of honor, service, courage, leadership and patriotism. Photo by Douglas R. Totten.

Education

Literacy

Members of the now disbanded Sierra Chapter of California taught immigrants to sew and speak English four afternoons a week.