Be a Guest of the Past

Developed by JCHS staff and area educators, Be a Guest of the Past is a unique program that allows students to get their hands on history. Winner of the 2003 Donald Fett Social Studies Instruction Award, this program complements the 5th/6th grade curriculum for Iowa History. Teachers utilize the resources on this website for all of the necessary lessons and materials to prepare students for a field trip to the 1876 Coralville Schoolhouse. While at the schoolhouse, students become a historic character (whom they will have researched prior to the visit) and go through a typical day in a one-room school from the 1870s.

The program typically starts at 9:30 a.m. and ends at 1:30 p.m.

Teacher Resources

Rules and Expectations

  • The same classroom rules and expectations apply in the schoolhouse as in your school.
  • No running, shouting, or gum-chewing inside the schoolhouse.
  • Be aware of your surroundings. There are artifacts, old books, photographs, and other delicate and historic objects throughout the site.
  • You will be assigned a seat at one of the wooden desks. These are artifacts from the past and should be treated with care. The seats are attached to the desks and close quickly. Enter and exit the desks carefully. Do not sit on your knees or feet—they can become trapped between the seat and seatback if the seat closes.
  • Cellphones may not be brought into the schoolhouse by students. Teachers may bring a phone, tablet, or camera to take photos of the class to be shared with everyone later.
  • You may bring a pencil and your autograph book/journal.
  • Bring a sack lunch to the museum if your class will be having lunch with us. Lunches will be left in the cloakroom upon arrival.

Optional Resources