Naturalization Ceremony Enhances Upper Elementary Social Studies

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Providence Montessori School’s upper elementary students attended a naturalization ceremony conducted by the United States District Court in special session at Transylvania University. 226 individuals from 71 counties became citizens while the students observed. The Honorable Karen K. Caldwell, Chief Judge for the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky, presided over the ceremony and extended a special greeting and welcome to the Providence students during her remarks.

In addition to witnessing the ceremony, the students were treated to a performance of patriotic music by Transylvania University’s organist, Richard Dwyer, and the University’s student a capella group.


Following the ceremony, the students participated in a question and answer session on the naturalization process led by Mary Ann Miranda, a career law clerk/staff attorney for the court and a Providence parent. Students were also greeted by Transylvania University admissions counselors Sarah Guinn and Meredith Norman, a graduate of Versailles Montessori and Montessori Middle School of Kentucky.

Ms. Miranda orchestrated the field trip with the  upper elementary teachers following an invitation extended by Chief Judge Caldwell. This tied in beautifully with their current study of immigration and American government.  Transylvania University’s Sustainability Director and Providence parent Angela Poe assisted the group during their time on campus, arranging for the use of a faculty-student meeting space for the lesson after the ceremony and helping the group maneuver through the crowds gathered to celebrate this momentous occasion. Many thanks to the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky and Transylvania University for welcoming our students! Thanks also to the Providence parents who helped to make this happen!


  1. Diane Irvin
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    Attending the naturalization ceremony was a wonderful experience! Our class, seated in the balcony, was actually recognized as special guests. They politely waved to the crowd, realizing it was a solemn ceremony for the new naturalized citizens. We are currently studying early 20th century events such as immigration, Ellis Island, World War I, Roaring 20’s, and the Great Depression which tied in well with the naturalization ceremony!

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