Stamps & Postal History Land In Michigan Classrooms


By Alexander Haimann, Collections Specialist

A Star Wars stamp and a Remember Pearl Harbor cover

For the uninitiated it is hard to imagine that topics as diverse as Star Wars, Deep Sea Creatures, Toys, Horses, Michigan History, America's Founding Fathers, Rock N' Roll and the Japanese Attack on Pearl Harbor are all connected through stamps and postal history. I was fortunate to be able to spend the past two weeks (April 12-23, 2010) exploring these topics and much more with 1500+ K-12 students at seven Michigan schools.

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A class presentation at Way Elementary School, Bloomfield Hills, MI.

The seven schools comprised two high schools (one public, one private), three middle schools (one public, two private) and two elementary schools (one public, one private). I gave a total of fifty presentations throughout that two week period and depending on the school and grade level, each presentation lasted between 20-75 minutes. Most presentations utilized the National Postal Museum's collections website Arago along with a number of specifically tailored postal history objects and stamps to illustrate a variety of curriculum related topics.

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An evening presentation to students, faculty and parents at Cranbrook Kingswood Schools.

For me, few days are more exhausting or as exhilarating as those when I am interacting with students. Over the next few weeks, I will highlight here on the Smithsonian National Postal Museum's blog the variety of activities and projects that students tackled during my April school visits in Michigan. Check back soon to learn more.

Alex Haimann

About the Author
Alexander T. Haimann, Collections Specialist & Web Projects Developer at the Smithsonian National Postal Museum, collects and writes primarily about the stamps and postal history of the U.S. during the first one hundred years of stamp production (1847-1947). Additionally, he develops internet based education projects and exhibits for the National Postal Museum. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Stamp Dealers Association, the Chair of the American Philatelic Society’s Young Philatelic Leaders Fellowship and the publicist for the United State Philatelic Classics Society. His national and international society memberships include the American Philatelic Society, United States Stamp Society, Collectors Club of New York and the Royal Philatelic Society London.