Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities

Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities

The Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities or LEH will launch a preschool reading program in seven parishes thanks to a $540,000 grant awarded Monday by energy giant BHP Billiton.

More than 2,500 children and their parents will participate in the PRIME TIME Preschool Program starting in October, according to LEH’s interim president Miranda Restovic.

Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities

The national family literacy program Prime Time is underway in schools across Louisiana. The program works to refine family reading habits and attitudes about books. The weekly 90-minute session held in the evening brings together elementary school children and their parents to listen to and discuss classic literature. Miranda Restovic, deputy director of the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities, said Prime Time brings parents into the fold of learning, and makes the school a more welcoming place for them.

Teachers from 25 Caddo Parish schools have begun a graduate seminar  at LSU Shreveport to enhance their expertise and ability to teach American and Louisiana history. The Teaching American History grant from the U.S. Department of Education has been the bread-and-butter program for the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities over the years. These grants totaled $2 million for Caddo Parish since 2005, and touched 370 teachers. LEH president Michael Sartisky said the current group of teachers will be the last ones through the program.

Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities

The Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities has added a new feature to its expanding digital encyclopedia of Louisiana history and culture -- KnowLA. The LEH is distributing downloadable QR codes to museums statewide. The barcode can be printed and mounted alongside artwork. By scanning it with a smartphone, it takes the viewer from the static piece of art into the rich, interconnected encyclopedia entry.  LEH president Michael Sartisky said there are 276 artist entries in KnowLA -- all of them with QR codes – from folk artist Clementine Hunter to Shreveport illustrator Bill Joyce.

A veteran political science professor from LSU Shreveport will receive the Humanist of the Year award from the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities at an April 6 ceremony in Darrow, La. William "Bill" Pederson has taught at LSUS for 34 years and founded the International Lincoln Center for American Studies. It’s the only center of its kind that showcases President Abraham Lincoln’s legacy outside America. In the Lincoln tradition, Pederson showed humility about receiving the award.

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