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Shaw proves Golden Age Americans formed an innovation nation

Grace Yanguez ‘23


Ever think about how life would be without all our gadgets and technologies?

Luckily, we don’t have to imagine such a world, as many historical events from the past have led to an addiction to innovation. It’s important to learn how we equipped all these appliances: that’s what history teachers want to imprint upon their students, the legacy of the past.

Such a teacher exists here at Riverview. Current Honors and Regular US History teacher Tim Shaw takes these lessons to heart and engraves them in the minds of his students. This time, Shaw planned to teach his students about the second America Industrial Revolution, along with the innovations and inventions created at the time.

“Students were required to name the inventor and invention along with its impact on the economy, or how it improved the standard of living,” said Shaw.

Seems like no easy feat, especially since the students are limited to just one newspaper line as representation for their findings.

Shaw had his students focus on the Gilded Age. Their work had to relate to this time period and the inventions made from 1870 through 1900.

“The Gilded Age, after the Civil War and throughout Reconstruction, was the 30-year period (roughly) that brought tremendous industrial and economic growth in America,” said Shaw.

Shaw hoped his students take a clear understanding of the impact of Americans during the Gilded Age, and how their inventions shaped America today. This activity also taught students how to edit their work to just a headline or subheading.

“It was an exercise in expressing meaningful information with the least amount of words possible. That’s in addition to following directions and editing to produce a quality product,” stated Shaw.

This isn’t the first time Shaw has indulged in this specific assignment. He commented that his US History students participated in this activity last year as well. It’s safe to say that this project has proved beneficial to students, and it is a great precedent to Shaw’s efforts as an educator here at Riverview.

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