Living History Education Program

The Living History Education Program (LHEP) is an important project of the San Antonio Living History Association that supports area Social Studies teachers who have expressed an interest towards incorporating the LHEP that offers SALHA volunteered mentoring talents and techniques to assist them in development of living history methods to use in their Social Studies classrooms. The primary objective of the SALHA Living History Education Program is to establish school partnerships that provide teachers to create a hands-on experiential learning environment that will stimulate student interest in learning Social Studies and help to affect positive changes in LHEP teacher instructional strategies. This SALHA educational support program provides teachers living history training, supplies, materials, and volunteer SALHA LHEP mentors to help enhance their Social Studies classrooms for improved student curriculum comprehension. Training for SALHA members willing to become LHEP mentors is also available and offers them subsidized clothing benefits when qualifying training courses are completed.

Living history in the classroom is an educational process that blends humanities with multiple arts including theater drama, writing, music, dance, visual and apparel arts, and historical storytelling.

Connecting students to the Social Studies through the arts also brings inspiration and emotion to the classroom when historical role-playing becomes a part of the Social Studies curriculum. The LHEP also promotes a student development of empathy for the historical experiences of people removed in time and distance; which is an admirable, and often difficult goal for social studies teachers. The humanities information and historical interpretations presented through theatre arts are important components of a comprehensive study of the social studies. Living history portrayals consist of student involvement in focused learning through scripted, interpretive, and original experiences. Cross curriculum teacher cooperation in schools also enriches a student’s learning environment that also stimulates their outlook through the LHEP approach. SALHA LHEP lesson plans, developed with partnered classroom teachers, are aligned with the Texas objectives known as Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) for Social Studies.

Anyone interested in joining this SALHA educational effort may call Robert M. Benavides at (210) 273-1730 or email for more information on the Living History Education Program.

NOTE: Current and previous SALHA officers have been Texas History teachers or Social Studies educators who also have done archival research and authored historical books and articles for local, state and national historical publications.

SALHA conducts Living History Interpretive Theater Workshops as free community outreach opportunities for residents and students interested in both history and theater arts.  On May 24, 2014, “Dressing the Part” a free SALHA Historical Clothing Workshop, was sponsored by educational grants from the City’s Department for Cultural and Creative Development (DCCD) and the San Antonio Conservation Society. This project was the first free community outreach program in the SALHA Living History Education Program (LHEP).

LHEP Opportunities

Teachers, students and educators, you’re invited to the Living History Education Program!    

The LHEP offers opportunities for college and university students to participate with SALHA and garner community service hour credits. In addition, new SALHA members joining from the San Antonio community possessing educational or nonprofit skills are also invited to become a part of helping SALHA to achieve these educational partnering objectives. Among the first of the needed skills are those with historical clothing construction experience, while others experienced in acting and technical theatre arts are needed to support both SALHA programs, events, and living history mentoring efforts for partnered LHEP teachers and students. Communications and marketing are also valuable skills needed towards our mission statement.