Thomasville Times Enterprise

July 4, 2014

Goffs excel at history event

Staff report

— Thirteen students from Thomas County Middle School and Thomas County High School recently competed at National History Day — an international competition in College Park, Md. The competition was housed at the University of Maryland.

Students displayed their projects ranging from websites to performances, exhibits and documentaries before being interviewed by a panel of judges. They were judged on historical quality, clarity of presentation and relation to the theme.  This year’s  theme was “Rights and Responsibilities” and each project reflected the theme.

While students were not in competition, they were able to visit Washington, D.C., and view sites including the National Mall, Library of Congress and the National Archives.   The junior group division website created by Clay, Emma and Zach Goff placed ninth. Their website titled “Reconciliation Villages: Healing After the Rwandan Genocide” was praised for the personal touch, analysis of primary sources and the variety of viewpoints used to prove their thesis. It examined the history of the Hutus and the Tutsi since the arrival of Europeans through the time just before the genocide began, the radio propaganda used to deliver information prior to and during the genocide, the destroyed basic human rights and the reasons why the reconciliation villages are needed.

Through the use of photographs, music and personal interviews, the students were able to show the horrific events of 1994 and the restoration of the communities through forgiveness and faith. This website was created by the students while in Amanda West’s sixth-grade classroom and the TCMS MERIT program.

Next year’s theme, “Leadership and Legacy” will require students to use the same principals for their research and projects.