WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Mint today introduced its new online learning community, called “U.S. Mint H.I.P. Pocket Change” (History In your Pocket), which will provide a collaborative educational environment using coins as tools to teach American history, mathematics and language arts. The web site, developed in accordance with Vice President Al Gore’s “Information Superhighway” initiative, seeks to build interest in coins as tangible artifacts of history, art and math, and to encourage young people to build their own coin collections.
“Through the ages, coins have told the stories of the cultures they represent,” said Philip N. Diehl, Director of the U.S. Mint. “U.S. Mint H.I.P. Pocket Change is not only a great way for children and adults around the world to learn those stories, but it will also inspire them to hold onto a piece of history by collecting coins.
The U.S. Mint H.I.P. Pocket Change site, located at www.usmint.gov, is a free Federal web site that was created by a team of web–savvy teachers, the Mint and the Numismatic Guaranty Corporation of America. The teacher–oriented portion of the site offers lesson plans and project ideas that incorporate the educational value of coins into the learning process. The site will continue to be supplemented and maintained by the Mint with support from partners, including the Numismatic Guaranty Corporation of America, the American Numismatic Association and the educational community through Online Lesson Modules, which allow teachers to upload their new lesson plans, making them available to others.
Students in kindergarten through eighth grade will use U.S. Mint H.I.P. Pocket Change to design their own learning experiences through educational games. Kids can travel through time and cyberspace in a virtual time machine to answer coin–related questions from “HPC Pals” like Peter the Mint Eagle and Flip the Mint Seal. The project contemplates that kids will also have the opportunity to interact with students in classrooms nationwide, as well as coin experts and representatives from the U.S. Mint.
“Students learn more when they are having fun, and U.S. Mint H.I.P. Pocket Change provides plenty of entertaining graphics and animations while providing solid educational value,” added Diehl. “Parents will see their kids enjoy learning from the U.S. Mint H.I.P. Pocket Change web site, a safe place for children of all ages on the Internet.
U.S. Mint H.I.P. Pocket Change was developed as part of Vice President Al Gore’s campaign to ensure that teachers have the skills they need to use technology, and that children have access to learning tools that are as engaging as the best video games.
For more information on the U.S. Mint H.I.P. Pocket Change and other Mint initiatives, visit the Mint’s web site at www.USMINT.gov.