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posted: 2/23/2014 1:01 AM

McHenry County Historical Society needs docents

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Submitted by McHenry County Historical Society

If you enjoy telling a good story, thrive on meeting new people and have a drive to learn new things, the McHenry County Historical Society & Museum has an educational opportunity for you.

The society is in need of docents interested in portraying a one-room schoolteacher in an original country school on the museum grounds, as well as to chaperon students as they tour the 1847 Gannon log cabin and the 1870 historical museum.

This is a great volunteer opportunity for retired teachers, historical re-enactors or theater majors. But you need not be a professional educator to participate. All you need is an interest in history and a willingness to share it with others.

The historical society provides training, as well as a docent guide. The time commitment can be as much or as little as you are able.

The 1895 West Harmony one-room school is available for a two-hour visit by McHenry County third- through fifth-graders. Students participate in a 1900 school day, complete with lessons in arithmetic, reading, penmanship, grammar, history, and games at recess.

Times are 9 to 11 a.m., 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and Wednesdays throughout the school year.

A more expansive, two-hour tour is available Thursdays and Fridays that includes West Harmony School, the museum and the log cabin. Available times are from 9 to 11 a.m., 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. or 10 a.m. to noon.

Also, thanks to a grant from the McHenry County Community Foundation, participating schools will receive $200 toward defraying their travel expenses to the museum.

Retired teacher and former historical society administrator Nancy Fike, as well as Jane Dahm, veteran docent and past board member, will lead a free training session starting at 1 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 25, at the museum, 6422 Main St. in Union. RSVPs are requested but not required.

Call (815) 923-2267 or email if you will be attending.