Week 9: Everyone has to leave…

Share This:

Monday, August 24, 2015


Brean Prefontaine

Things were a little strange after the final presentations on Friday of last week. I knew that this was the end for everyone else besides Shauna and myself. Some people left that same day of the final presentations and some of the boys left the very next day, but for everyone else we still had a weekend and, in some cases, another week.

We decided to make the most of one of the last weekends and head down to the mall to go to some of the museums. We started out the day with a visit to the American History Museum. They had all different aspects of American history in here. Some of my favorite exhibits included the First Ladies exhibit with dresses from each first lady and an exhibit that took you through each war that the United States has been involved in. The war exhibit included everything from military uniforms to weapons to helicopters. I really liked it! Then we decided to head over to the Natural History Museum which was right next door. It did not occur to me that this was where Night at the Museum took place until we had gone through a few of the exhibits, but I think that it is neat that one of those movies was based at this museum. We decided to start on the top floor with the “gems and minerals” exhibit. There were many different meteorites in this exhibit as well as all of the gems that you could possibly think of. The highlight of this exhibit was definitely the Hope Diamond necklace. This necklace had its own separate room and show case. It sure was crowded around it, but it was beautiful!

Since it was getting late, the other interns and I decided that even though we had not seen all of the Natural History Museum it would be smart to head over to a restaurant for dinner. Shauna and I made plans to go back the next day to finish up the Natural History Museum. After one of the outreach events earlier in the summer, Courtney had Interns at the Natural History Museumtaken the interns that participated out to lunch at Ted’s Bulletin. It had been so good, that we all decided that we should go back for dinner. I had been craving biscuits and gravy for awhile, so I did the old breakfast for dinner thing. It was delicious!

Sunday morning, Shauna and I headed back down to the National Mall to finish up the Natural History museum. After walking through as much of this museum as we could (it is really big!), we decided that it was time to get some lunch. Mummies at the Natural History MuseumConveniently there were some food trucks parked along the National Mall and we were able to find and interesting truck that offered a Middle Eastern and Mexican fusion cuisine. After lunch we headed over to the Archives and saw the Declaration of Independence and Constitutions (and of course all of the other documents that goes with those documents). Right next door to the Archives is the National Art Gallery, so Shauna and I decidedSome glow in the dark rocks at the Natural History Museumthat we could head over and walk through some of that museum. There were so many different galleries within the National Art Gallery that we could not have possibly done them all. After walking through the small selection of contemporary art on the first floor, we decided to head up to the second floor. This was where all of the usual things, such as Monet and Rembrandt, were housed. Overall we had a great time exploring some more of the museums and were able to see a lot over the weekend.

The start of this work week was a little different without Connor always there with me. She was staying until the end of the week but she was not at work anymore. Joanna, the graduate student that was working on the project with us, was also not in the office anymore. This meant that I was all alone on the third floor since there were not many other people sitting in the area where out cubicles were. However, this was not entirely a bad thing. I had more time to work on all of the things that I needed to get done before the summer came to an end for me as well.

Since the lesson plans are an ongoing project, it was really important to make sure that the project would be easy for someone else to pick up. After talking to Dr. Good and going through some of our files, I realized that the project was not organized at all. We had copies of files that were exactly the same, lesson plans were left incomplete, and there was not even a list of all of the lesson plans. In short, it would be a mess for someone else to try to pick up this project and continue on with it. So, I decided that I would devote my last two weeks to finishing up the lesson plans that I had invested a lot of time into and I would make sure that the project was in order and ready to hand Shauna and I went to Ben's Chili Bowloff to someone else. I started off this week by organizing all of the folders and files that the project consisted of. This took a while, but I was finally able to make it reasonable and easy to navigate through. Then, I spent some time creating a list of all of the lesson plans in both the women and African American sections. This list consisted of the title of the lesson plan, the current status of the lesson plan, and suggestions for finishing up that lesson plan. I hope that this will be a useful document for the future interns working on this project and that the guidelines for each lesson plan are clear.

While this week was all about organization, I am still not done with the project. I realized that I have been working on this project for nine weeks now and have become familiar with the location of everything, however an intern new to the project might be confused by all of the different folders and files. I think that next week I will really work on making a document that serves as a guide to the project so that future interns can become acquainted with the organization of the project and so that they can be informed as to what myself and the other interns accomplished this summer. I will continue with the organizational work next week and hopefully the project will be in tip top shape by the end of next week. Cheers!

Brean Prefontaine