ETC Student Essay Contest on Washington D.C.: Rules

ETC Student Travel Essay Contest 2009
$300 Prize for a Winning Essay on Washington D.C.

Essay Contest Topic:
Write a 500-750 word essay about your school trip to Washington D.C. and describe any attractions, events or people you saw that were memorable and inspirational.

Rules:

– Teachers from grades 6-12 must make the assignment to their class. Teachers to filter and only submit the best essays of the class.
– Deadline for Essay submissions is June 30th.
– Length of Essay: 500-750 words
– The contestants must have taken a trip with Educational Travel Consultants to Washington D.C. beginning in September of 2008 and ending June 30th 2009. The winning essay will be announced Sept 1, 2009.
– First Prize for the student essay is $300.
– The teacher of the class with winning essay will win $200.
– Students cannot submit their own essays directly. Participating class essays will be selected by the teacher and submitted to the contest.
– Judges come from the secondary school system from various parts of the United States and have traveled to Washington D.C.
– Award Notification ? The winning essayist and teacher will be notified first by telephone and then in writing on September 1, 2009.
– Employees or family members of ETC are not eligible to compete in the Student Essay Contest. Essays must be typed. The essay will not be returned so please do not submit the only copy. Teachers please submit 2 copies of the essay. One copy should contain the student and teacher names, address, email and phone number along with school affiliation. The other copy of the essay should only have a title, with no name or school affiliation.
– No digital copies will be accepted, hard copy only.
– The winning essay will be published on www.EducationalTravelConsultants.com.
– ETC reserves the right to use excerpts of other student essays in promotional materials.

(Essays must be postmarked by June 30th to be eligible)
Submit Essays:


Educational Travel Consultants
PO Box 1580
Hendersonville, NC 28793
(828)693-0412

For further information email info@educationaltravelconsultants.com, but PLEASE do not submit digital copies of essays.

Educational Travel Consultants Announces Essay Contest on Washington D.C. Student Trips

(Washington D.C.) Educational Travel Consultants (ETC) is proud to announce The ETC Student Travel Essay Contest for 2009. Students who traveled with ETC to Washington D.C. from September 2008- June 30 2009 are eligible to compete.
Entrants must write a 500-750 word essay on the subject of their recent trip to Washington D.C. and describe any events, attractions, or people that were memorable or inspirational.

The teacher submits the best essay(s) in the class and they may compete for the $300 prize. The teacher of the class with the winning student essay will also receive a $200 prize for participating. The contest is designed to highlight the best of educational experiences available to the student traveler in Washington D.C.

Howard Clemens, CEO of Educational Travel Consultants, says he started the contest because, “I know student travelers are having unique, once in a lifetime experiences. Often, students coming from as faraway as the West Coast or Midwest have never visited Washington D.C.” Capturing the best of a student trip to Washington D.C. in writing is a way to help students remember what they have learned. Awarding a cash prize to a student and teacher is also a way to inspire young writers and thank teachers for their part in the contest.

“Educational Travel Consultants is dedicated to active learning and academic excellence,” added Clemens, “and the Student Essay Contest on Washington D.C. fosters both of these.”

All contest entries must be submitted by teachers and postmarked no later than June 30, 2009 to be eligible for the competition. A winning student essay and teacher of the class that produced that essay will be announced on September 1, 2009, the kickoff for the 2009-2010 student travel season. The winning student essay will be featured on the Educational Travel Consultants website.

The Educational Travel Consultants Student Essay Contest will be judged by two professional educators from the secondary school system in the United States. ETC employees and family members are not eligible to compete in the contest.

Educational Travel Consultants have been serving the student travel industry for nearly 25 years. As student travel experts, the company specializes in customizing tours for any curriculum. ETC has developed special student tours that focus on art, performance, black history, science and eco tours. The company serves the entire United States, but specializes in student tours to Washington D.C., New York City, and Orlando. Email info@educatiionaltravelconsultants.com or Request a Quote via the web.

Planning an Exciting Band Trip: Educational Student Tours Near Washington DC

In today’s modern world planning student trips everyone will enjoy can be a daunting task. Planning a trip for the high school or junior high band can add even more complexity. Band trips can be designed to have something for everyone. If a student group plans to attend one of Washington D.C.’s most popular festivals, the trip can be designed to suit music and art students. Here are a few suggestions for your next student band trip.

A Band Trip to Washington D.C.: The Annual Cherry Blossom Festival

In 1912 Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo gave the gift of 3,000 cherry trees to the city of Washington D.C. in honor of the relationship between the United States and Japan. In 1915 the United States returned the sentiment with a gift of flowering dogwoods for the people of Japan. By 1935 the first Cherry Blossom Festival was held and the tradition has continued ever since. Currently over one million people visit Washington DC each year to see the cherry trees in full glory and to enjoy different festival events, which include the annual Cherry Blossom Festival Parade.

The National Cherry Blossom Festival Parade is one of the highlights of the festival each year. Huge parade balloons, musical performers, celebrities, marching bands and more fill Constitution Avenue while TV stations broadcast the parade live. The parade features a wide variety music including:

1. Singers like American Idol finalist (2nd season) Kimberly Locke, Grammy winner Thelma Houston, Disney Radio star Joey Page and Miss America 2009 Katie Stam.
2. Student Performers come from far and wide to play at the festival. Students from the Creative and Performing Arts High School in Philadelphia, the All-Star Tap Team and Youth Choir and marching bands from as far as Elko High School in Nevada make it to the Cherry Blossom Festival Parade.
3. Broadway performances by the cast of Chicago and songs from Mamma Mia! have also been part of the festival and the Broadway tradition will likely continue.

The National Cherry Blossom Festival is the perfect destination for a high school band trip to Washington DC, whether students want to watch on the sidelines or participate in the parade fun. To plan an extra special band trip consider attending the 2012 Cherry Blossom Festival, the centennial anniversary of Japan’s beautiful gift to the nation’s capital. Always plan at least a year or more in advance to schedule band performances in the parade. Be certain to work with a qualified student travel professional that has experience in putting together band trips.

Make Sure to Wear Green on Your Student Trip to the Washington D.C. St. Patrick’s Day Parade

Another great plan for a high school band trip is to attend or participate in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Washington, DC. Started in 1971, the annual St. Pat’s parade is a community endeavor supported by the Irish American Club and city officials. Each year a noteworthy person is chosen as the parade Grand Marshall. A parade theme is announced and the honored title of Gael of the Year is bestowed on a deserving member of the community.

Invitations are sent to marching bands, performers, organizations, floats and groups the parade committee feels are appropriate for the parade celebration. Student band trip itineraries can be created to secure great seating to watch the parade or groups can schedule time to perform in the parade. To learn more about receiving an invitation for your band visit the parade web site at www.dcstpatsparade.com.

A Band Trip to Virginia Students Will Love: The Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival

Each year more than 250,000 visitors descend upon the small town of Winchester, Virginia to enjoy a week of fun activities that comprise the Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival. For student trips headed to Washington D.C. the Apple Blossom Festival is a great addition. Since 1924, the annual festival has grown to include parades, dances, band competitions, floats, a 10K run, music, a carnival, a circus, sporting, events, car shows, craft shows, delicious food and the traditional Apple Blossom Pageant.

High school band trips, student musical tours and student performance trips to Washington D.C. can all be planned around the Apple Blossom Festival. Musically inclined students may enjoy seeing some famous faces. In the past the Apple Blossom Festival has been proud to host celebrities like Fantasia Barrino, Wayne Newton, Sea Astin, Dan Akyroyd, Katie Couric, Bob Hope, Bing Crosby and Lucille Ball who have served as grand marshals. In 2009 American Idol star Bucky Covington will headline the week’s concerts.

A must see event for band trips and student groups is the Coronation of Queen Shenandoah and the annual Pageant. The coronation ceremony is fashioned after the ceremonies of the British monarchy and the Pageant originally featured a performance by over 1,000 local school children. The annual Pageant has been held on the steps of Handley High School since 1925 and the traditional Royal Command Performance is presented by the Handley Singers.

If you are planning a band trip, student performance tour or a simple group excursion festivals can be an excellent plan whether you are in Washington DC, New York City, Philadelphia or anywhere else in the United States. Email info@educationaltravelconsultants.com or Request a Quote for a student travel company that can help manage all of the details, itineraries and events.

Student Trips to Boston May Request a Revolutionary War Tour Theme

by Howard Clemens

For students reading about the Revolutionary War in social studies or history classes, Boston, Massachusetts is a great choice as a destination for active learning. Visits to select destinations bring the early days of the Revolutionary War alive for student travel groups. Student trips headed for Boston, Mass. will learn about the Revolutionary War from multiple perspectives, with some sites offering living history programs.

Leading men who fought for freedom from England during the time period include: John Adams, John Quincy Adams, and Paul Revere. These are just a few of the well-known figures of the Revolutionary War who come alive on a student tour. Countless farmers and families who mustered as Minute Men and defended their properties while under attack by British troops supported these leading figures.

Boston Massacre
The Boston Massacre occurred in 1770 in downtown Boston, just outside the Old State House at the corner of Devonshire and State Streets. British soldiers had occupied Boston for nearly two years and tension between the colonists and soldiers reached a peak. An agitated crowd began to complain loudly to soldiers and one of the British fired into the crowd, killing five people that day. This event was widely publicized and well documented. John Adams, a lawyer then, defended Captain Preston and six of his troops were acquitted, while two men were found guilty of manslaughter and discharged from the army. The first patriot to die was a freed slave who worked on whale ships: Crispus Attucks.

John Adams: Roles in Revolutionary War History
John Adams was at one time a lawyer, and he actually defended Captain Preston in the case of the Boston Massacre. Despite his beginnings, he became one of the most esteemed figures of the Revolutionary War period. Adams gifted his extensive collection of books to the town of Quincy, Massachusetts in 1822 at the age of 86. Today, parts of this collection are being digitized for easier public access. The collection as well as Adams’ papers is housed in the Boston Public Library Copley Square Rare Books and Manuscripts Department. Student trips may tour this part of the library to gain an understanding about the life of one of the influential figures in drafting and signing the Declaration of Independence. Adams was the first Vice President and the second President of the United States. He also served as a diplomat to Paris and Holland. Though he and his wife Abigail lived frugally on a public servant’s salary, Adams invested a huge sum in books, which is evident from visiting the library. Teachers and students may access special educational materials from the John Adam’s library at http://www.johnadamslibrary.org/explore/teachersandstudents/.

John Quincy Adams
The son of John Adams, John Quincy became a capable diplomat and linguist. Long before he became the 6th President, John Quincy Adams held many distinguished governmental roles, including Secretary of State for James Monroe, where he was instrumental in drafting the Monroe Doctrine. John Quincy can be studied in depth at the Adams National Historical Park. Student travel groups may tour the Visitor Center. With reservations, the student group may also take a Ranger guided tour of the Old House and the Presidential birthplaces. Historical narratives by costumed interpreters John and Abigail Adams and Thomas Jefferson are also presented in season. Check with your student travel agency to see if there will be any living history performances while a student group is on tour.

Lexington and Concord
On any student trip to Boston to study the Revolutionary War, a trip to the Minute Man National Historical Park, which spans the Lexington and Concord battlefields, is a must. Here is where the first battle of the Revolutionary War was fought by the Minute Men or troops from the New England countryside. For groups with time, a 3 ? hour battle road trail walk gives the entire perspective of the beginning of the Revolutionary War. Student groups may also visit the Minute Man Visitor Center and watch the film and visit the exhibits. At Hartwell Tavern, Rangers demonstrate firing muskets from an authentic early American rifle. Or, students may want to add a visit to The Wayside, where Nathaniel Hawthorne and Louisa May Alcott both wrote. The Lexington and Concord Museum ranger programs and historical sites draw upon information from the Concord writers of the Revolutionary War period. Teachers who would like to prepare a curriculum for the student trip may visit http://www.nps.gov/mima/forteachers/index.htm.

Walking Tour of Boston
The Freedom Trail is a fun, healthy way to see Boston through the lens of the Revolutionary War period. This walk may take several hours so students are encouraged to dress accordingly, wear comfortable shoes and bring some drinking water. The Freedom Trail begins at Boston Common and includes Beacon Hill, The Union Oyster House (for lunch) and a visit to Paul Revere’s home, a two-story clapboard house across from North Square. Groups also stop at Old North Church, where the first bells of the British Colonies were rung in North America. The Freedom Trail ends with the USS Constitution and the Bunker Hill Monument. The USS Constitution has been nicknamed “Old Ironsides” as a result of engagements with the British in the War of 1812. Student groups love to take The Freedom Trail tour because it is mostly outdoors and a wonderful way for a group to see Boston in the spring or fall.

Educational travel can be a great way to get students excited about periods in American history. Boston is a city where student travelers can experience Early American architecture, artifacts, politics and art and it should not be overlooked as a worthwhile student travel destination. Email info@educationaltravelconsultants.com for information about a student tour of Boston or Request a Quote.

The Ultimate Chicago Student Trip! Plan a Student Tour of Obama’s Chicago

by Howard Clemens

A majority of teachers in the United States chose the teaching profession because they believed they would have the opportunity to educate, inspire and nurture young minds. In the classroom children of all ages learn about themselves and the world around them. Outside of the classroom extracurricular activities like sports, academic clubs, band and school field trips provide experiences to help kids imagine all of the possibilities ahead of them.

Create a Chicago Student Trip Itinerary to Inspire Students of Any Age

President Barack Obama’s life has been an amazing journey with struggles and triumphs. He is proof that with hard work, dedication and passion people can live their dreams. President Obama’s story shows children from all walks of life they can be anything they want when they grow up. Here are some ideas for a Chicago student trip itinerary that include some destinations on the “Obama Tour.”

Take a Student Trip to Chicago and Explore the Personal Life of the Obama Family

In order to understand where it all began student tours can follow the suggestion of the Chicago Tribune and visit the Chase Tower, the former home of Sidley & Austin, the law firm where Barack and Michelle Obama first met in 1989. Then stop by to see 1400 East 53rd Street, the location of a brick building that used to be a Baskin Robbins ice ream parlor. It was here that the president and First Lady had their first kiss. Student trips can also include a stop at the basketball courts on Hayes and South Lake Shore Drive where President Obama and his brother in law regularly shot hoops. Next visit the South Shore Cultural Center where the Obamas held their wedding reception in 1992.

At 5450 SE View Park student tours will catch a glimpse of the condominium where Barack and Michelle lived for twelve years before purchasing their Kenwood neighborhood home in 2005. According to an article in the Chicago Sun Times written by Mark J. Konkol, Michelle Obama stated “I love living in Hyde Park, so close to so many of our friends and family. The community is diverse and very family-oriented, and, as the mom of two daughters, I really appreciate that.” The Obama Family Home is not currently open to the public.

Student Tour Destinations that Explore Barack Obama’s History as a Professor, Politician and President

A Chicago student trip wouldn’t be complete without visiting the sites associated with President Obama’s academic, political and presidential past. First on the list is the Holy Rosary Catholic Church rectory located at 351 E 113th Street. Obama worked here as a community organizer during the 1980’s. Next students can enjoy a tour of the University of Chicago Law School. President Obama taught here from 1993 until 2003.

In order to spark student conversation about President Obama’s political views stop by Federal Plaza, where then Senator Obama gave a speech against the Iraq war at a rally in 2002.

Student groups may then take a student tour of the campaign trail, which includes:

–233 N Michigan Avenue: the pre-election campaign headquarters.
–151 E Wacker Drive: the Hyatt Regency Chicago where Obama watched the election results.
–East Congress Parkway: Grant Park’s Hutchinson Field where approximately 250,000 came on election night to hear president Obama’s victory speech.

Enjoy Some of Obama Family Favorites on your Student Trip to Chicago

In order to complete a Chicago field trip itinerary include some practical, affordable destinations students can experience first hand. The Chicago Tribune suggests these Obama family favorites.

Shopping Favorites

1508 E 55th Street–What the Traveler Saw Gift Shop
Shop in the gift shop located next to Obama’s former barber that the President would visit.

135 N Jefferson Street: Maria Pinto Boutique
Get a feel for the style of the designer who dressed First Lady Michelle Obama for the Democratic National Convention.

1301 E 57th Street–57th Street Books
Visit this co-op bookstore where the President and First lady are members. President Obama held parties here for the release of his books and Michelle Obama is quoted in the Chicago Sun Times by writer Mark J. Konkol as saying, “The variety of titles, the programs for kids and the neighborhood feel make it a wonderful place to take a walk to and browse around.”

Dining Favorites

445 N Clark Street?Topolobampo
Choose a blue-and-white fabric-covered booth on the south side of the restaurant like the Obamas and make sure to try the guacamole and sopa Azteca.

1518 E 53rd Street–Valois
Located in Hyde Park for over eighty years Valois offers simple, cafeteria style dining.

5412 W Madison Street–MacArthur’s Restaurant
A well-known, soul food restaurant beloved throughout Chicago MacArthur’s is the place to be. Make sure and try an Obama favorite: turkey legs and dressing.

980 N Michigan Avenue–Spiaggia
The president and First Lady ate here the Saturday after the election. According to the Chicago Tribune, rumors say President Obama “loved the wood-roasted scallops.”

Outdoor destinations
2500 North Halsted Street?Mural of Barack Obama
Student travelers: do not miss this eye-catching mural of Barack Obama.

55th Street in the Hyde Park Neighborhood–Promontory Point
Known to Chicago locals as simply The Point, Promontory Point is part of Burnham Park and opened to the public in 1937. The man-made peninsula extends out into lake Michigan and is a popular spot for sunbathers, kayakers, windsurfers and swimmers in the summer.

With all of these destinations to choose from that are linked to President Barack Obama’s past and present, there’s a great deal to see on an Obama tour. Select some top destinations on the Obama tour and add them to a student tour of Chicago. Portions of the Obama tour will also fit nicely into an art or performance tour of the windy city. Whatever a student group’s focus while on tour of Chicago, some short stops on this tour can provide insight into the new President’s formative years as a professor and a politician and his character as a whole.

For more information on the Obama Tour of Chicago, email info@educationaltravelconsultants.com or simply fill out the brief Request a Quote form.