Then and Now

Integrating Local Resources into the Classroom

written by Ann Bey

Day 1| Day 2 | Day 3| Day 4 | Day 5 | Day 6| Day 7| Day 8 | Day 9 | Day 10

Contact: John Gruber-Miller

A summer cultural enrichment day camp for middle school students to study the historical background of various time periods. Classes will meet from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. daily for two weeks in the Cedar Rapids Art Museum resource room.


Day 1 Introduction

Outline of daily activities

Class Requirements

Schedule of Field Trips

  Videos Roman lifestyles, architechture, and civilization
  Trip Guided tour of Cedar Rapids Art Museum with emphasis on the bust collections (adopt of bust).
  Journal Topics
  1. Brainstorming - give one example of what you already know about the history of Rome. Where would you go to find more information on this topic? Share ideas with others in groups of four.
  2. Record important information from videos in journals
  3. Introduce yourself and describe your own family. You will visit with your “adopted” bust often during this class.
Day 2 Lessons Roman Culture: Family and Architecture
  Walking Tour

Walking tour of Cedar Rapids to identify aspects of Roman influence in architecture. The following buildings should be observed:

Higley, McLaud, Gramby, Paramount, Baird, Killians, Guarantee Bank, Foreman Clark, World Theatre, First Presbyterian Church, People’s Unitarian Church, Carnegie Library, Witwer, Iowa Theater, and First Star Bank

Give identity quiz on Cedar Rapids architecture.

  1. Compare Roman families with your family showing similarities and differences. What is character? Define and discuss.
  2. What did you discover about the architecture you observed today? List your three favorite buildings and tell why you chose them.
  3. Visit with your “adopted” bust and about his physical appearance
Day 3 Field Trip

Cedar Rapids Art Museum; visit with your adopted bust

Ushers Ferry Historic Village, Cedar Rapids

  Lesson Roman Culture: Entertainment and Leisure
  1. What does this tell about his character and life style?
  2. Compare Roman entertainment to your entertainment - similarities and differences
  3. What historical information did you discover about the architecture and lifestyles?
Day 4 Lesson Roman Culture: Food and Dinner Parties
  Field Trips

Cedar Rapids Museum of Art: visit your bust

National Slovak Library and Museum: guided tour of "A Thousand Years of Czach Culture"

  1. How did Roman food and dinner parties differ from your families entertaining?
  2. What you think is important to him in his life? Give your bust an identity in Roman time period.
  3. What did you discover about Czech culture? How does it compare to Roman culture?
Day 5 Lesson Roman Culture: Relgion and Festivals
  Field Trips

Cedar Rapids Museum of Art: visit your bust

Kalona Historical Society: guided tour and lunch in Mennonite home

  1. Try to discover the importance of hair detail and describe his physical appearance.
  2. Compare Roman religions and festivals with today’s religious practices
  3. What did you discover about Mennonite teenagers and their lifestyles? Compare the information to your lifestyle.
Day 6 Lessons Roman Cultures: Teachers and Schools
  Field Trips

Cedar Rapids Museum of Art

Iowa Masonic Library: guided tour "A look at how the written word traces writing from anicent tablets to contemporary computer.s

  1. Would you enjoy being a student in a Roman school? What are the differences between your school and theirs? Visit with your “adopted” bust and think about his character.
  2. How would he treat others? How would others treat him? What do others say or think about him? What does he think or feel?
  3. How would he treat others? How would others treat him? What do others say or think about him? What does he think or feel?
Day 7 Lessons Roman Culture: Occupations
  Field Trips

Cedar Rapids Museum of Art: Roman Bust and African Art Exhibits

Iowa City Old Capital: guided tour


Write a rough draft of your bust’s character including physical appearance, what he says, what he does, and what other characters say or think about him.

How do Roman occupations compare to your families occupations today?

How does African Art compare to American Art? Discuss similarities and differences

What did you discover about the history of Iowa City and Old Capital? List at least five ideas.

Day 8 Lesson Roman Culture: Houses
  Field Trip Herbert Hoover Presidential Museum, West Branch: guided tour
  1. What are the differences between Roman houses and the houses of today?
  2. Was Hoover a popular president? Why or why not? What were three of his most important decisions?
  Class time work on character sketch
Day 9 Lessons

Roman Culture: Sturcture of Soceity

law and patron/client association

  Field Trips

History Center of Cedar Rapids: "Linn County Footprints in Time" (pre-history to 1859)

Cedar Rapids Museum of Art

  1. Who were the patrons and clients? Was the legal system similar to ours today? Discuss differences.
Day 10 Presentation Present your “adopted” bust to the class and discuss his character. Give details about his life.
  Roman Dinner

Roman dinner prepared by the teacher.

Menu: appetizers - Cappadocian lettuce, strong leeks, tuna fish and sliced eggs. Main course - fresh green cabbage, small sausages on a bed of white grits, pale beans with red bacon. Dessert - Syrian pears and roasted Neapolitan chestnuts served outdoors.



Shelton, Jo-Ann. As the Romans Did: A Sourcebook in Roman Social History. Oxford University Press: 1988

Instructors resource information packet