People ask "What is ACE"?
In 2001, a small group of classical numismatists came up with an idea for bringing ancient history to life in the classroom: give the kids a tangible link with the past through the restoration and identification of ancient coins. What better way to spark the imagination of young minds and generate interest in the ancient world than literally putting bits of that world directly into students’ hands?
Using Yahoo discussion groups to refine the concept, these numismatists formed Ancient Coins for Education, Inc., a not-for-profit, charitable organization run entirely by volunteers with the mission of providing assistance to classical educators. From its inception ACE has received an amazing outpouring of support from both dealers and private numismatists who donate their material, time and talents to the project. In an age when educational budgets are stretched too thin, ACE puts tools in the hands of educators that help them deliver a unique learning experience to their students.
The heart of the program consists of authentic 4th century A.D. Roman coins that the students receive to prepare, to identify – and to keep. In addition to the coins, ACE provides participating classes with a wealth of written curriculum materials and online resources that help maximize the students’ preparation and identification experience. A yearly series of essay contests judged at local and national levels provide participating elementary, middle and high school students with the opportunity to win exciting prizes. Together, these resources help educators prepare a cross-discipline curriculum unit that ties together concepts from social studies, humanities and foreign language perspectives while naturally incorporating technology and writing opportunities.
Last year ACE partnered with around 120 schools and educational projects across North America, and it is constantly expanding its reach. The program now includes several university classes, and pioneering projects such as school "Ancient Coin Museums" are under development. ACE materials are distributed to educators on a comprehensive CD and are also made available on its main web site, which can be found at www.ancientcoinsforeducation.org.
Due to the growing number of participating students, the ongoing benevolence of numismatists is essential to the survival of the ACE program. ACE is dependent on contributors to supply the coins, provide funds to cover shipping and other unavoidable expenses, and grant permission to use their scholarly articles and coin images in teaching materials.
ACE also needs volunteers who are willing to share their creative, numismatic and academic talents to develop new teaching resources, help judge essay contests and visit local classrooms. In addition to the immense gratification derived from stirring young people’s appreciation for ancient history and numismatics, contributors receive receipts for their charitable donations and acknowledgements on the ACE website.
Any numismatist who knows of a teacher who might be interested in using the ACE program or who would consider visiting a local classroom to talk about Ancient coins should please contact
. This is a great opportunity to share your interests with the classes of your children, grandchildren, and community!