Awesome. The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library contains several elaborate sets where visiting elementary school students re-enact the invasion of Grenada. “[I]n keeping with Mr. Reagan’s first career as an actor,” the Wall Street Journal writes, presumably without irony, “the Reagan Library appears to have the most elaborate stage sets [of any presidential library.]” The sets include an Oval Office, the White House press room, and Air Force One:
The replicas are built to three-quarters the size of the originals, and decorated as they were in 1983. The mock Oval Office has pictures of Mr. Reagan and Nancy Reagan on their wedding day, replicas of Mr. Reagan’s favorite horse sculptures and jars of jelly beans.
Making a 27-year-old invasion relevant for today’s children isn’t always easy. Kids have to be told what communists are, and why Grenada becoming a communist country would have been a big deal.
The reenactments are part history lesson, part interactive game. The kids decide whether or not to invade, how to carry out an invasion, even how to deal with media leaks.
Apparently, the re-enactment only works with elementary and middle school students. Too many high school students reject the invade-or-negotiate-with-communist-dictators script, which was written by a 25-year-old screenwriter.
At Reagan’s Presidential Library, the Kids Are in Control [wsj via @demilit]