Philadelphia Chapter Lewis and Clark Trail Heritage Foundation

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Chapter Meeting Program
January 17, 2004

Program: At 1 pm following the luncheon, the Chapter heard from two local teachers who are members of the team from the Academy of Natural Sciences that partnered with other educators from the Missouri Historical Society to develop a new free Lewis and Clark Online Curriculum for teachers, multi-disciplinary lesson plans for 4th through 12th grades using history, science, and language arts.

The Curriculum is designed to accompany next year’s Lewis and Clark National Bicentennial Exhibition which will open at the ANS in November, 2004 and remain there until March, 2005. ANS will also offer an extended evening program of speakers and activities throughout the duration of this important national exhibit.

Speakers were Cathy Fylypowycz, the science lead academic coach for the Philadelphia School District, and Mary Ann Boyer, a science teacher at the private Springside School in Wissahickon. They used computer projection to demonstrate how teachers can use the curriculum to “Tell the Story” of the earliest exploration ever conducted of the early American West. Fylypowycz wrote a unit on “Lewis and Clark and Animals,” while Boyer authored a unit on “Lewis and Clark, Curing and Plants.”

Tracy Meyers, L&C Education Coordinator at the ANS, arranged the opportunity for the Philadelphia Chapter to learn more about the curriculum. “We are honored that you would ask us introduce our Curriculum at your meeting,” said Meyers. The Philadelphia Chapter has a commitment to create awareness of the Philadelphia connection to the Lewis and Clark Expedition. This meeting gave us the opportunity to reach educators and their student populations.

Meyers and her assistant, Sharon Angus-Smith, were in St. Louis on the day of our meeting at a kick-off for the Curriculum at the Missouri Historical Society, while Pennsylvania teachers here were having one of the first introductions to the curriculum which will be distributed nationally. Philadelphia’s connection will be highlighted.

The first of the five units is one of special interest to our region. Called “Preparing for the Trip” the unit covers Meriwether Lewis's visit to Philadelphia in May and June of 1803, his sessions with five mentors from the American Philosophical Society and his shopping trips to purchase supplies for the expedition.

Teachers are not the only ones who can benefit from the curriculum. The units can also be used for personal study, home schooling, or by college teachers who want to access new research that has come to light during the Bicentennial Commemoration.

One can access the free curriculum by going to the Lewis and Clark National Exhibit website and clicking on "For Educators." For more information, contact Meyers at 215-405-5071 or at

You may remember that this summer the National Park Service named the ANS a “certified site on the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail” during our annual meeting of the LCTHF at the Loews Hotel.

(Program notes by Norma Martin Milner)

Get Acquainted with our Talented Speakers

Cathy Fylypowycz, Science Lead Academic Coach, Office of Curriculum, Instruction and Professional Development, School District of Philadelphia
Authored unit on “Lewis and Clark and Animals”

"As a teacher bringing my students to the Academy for over 20 years and having worked at the Academy of Natural Sciences for three years as the School District of Philadelphia Museum Teacher I developed a strong bond with the Academy and their education staff. When the opportunity to work with the Academy was offered I didn't hesitate."

"I was interested in the Lewis & Clark Bicentennial Commemoration and I believe that the integration of science and social studies is a natural and necessary one. Integrated curriculum with a theme provides real life experiences involving communities and results in learning compatible with many types of learners. This curriculum project should be a prototype for many future learning experiences that include informal and formal learning institutions."

Mary Ann Boyer, Science Teacher, Springside School, Philadelphia
Authored Unit on “Lewis and Clark, Curing and Plants”
"There are many reasons why I was attracted to the L&C curriculum development, but here's one reason why: I love how Lewis was the quintessential naturalist who carried out the scientific method by observing, inferring, recording, drawing, inferring and looking for new specimens to send back to Jefferson. I like to tell my students the story of when Lewis was shot in a hunting accident. As he lay on the ground bleeding, he whipped out his journal and jotted down notes about a beautiful cherry tree he observed on the horizon. The naturalist in him just didn't stop!"

"This spring, I will be incorporating the L&C lesson plans into my science curriculum. In the spirit of L&C, we will head out into the Wissahickon (which borders our school), and students will identify and collect their own plant specimens, learn how to press them, much like Lewis did. When students learn by doing, they bring history and science to life."


Updated January 23, 2004