James Brewbaker

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title



Columbus (Georgia) College's Challenge Squared program consists of three 2-week enrichment day camps for gifted students in grades 5 through 10. In past years, students have worked with an artist to create local history murals and have written and produced viceo plays in cooperation with a media specialist. Most recently, students were involved in the reading and writing of time-warp fiction based on events from local history. In the second week of the program, students wrote the episodic novel, "Crisis at the Clock Tower," which took its name from a tower built on campus in 1991 and which contains a time capsule scheduled to be opened in the year 2058 in conjunction with the institution's centennial. The time-travel theme was reinforced with day trips to areas of regional historical interest. After students read one of four time-warp novels, local history experts from the college faculty visited the class. Next, the students devoted themselves to research into Columbus history. A computer-Ixsed writing lab simplified the writing process. Challenge Squared's use of time travel opened the eyes of talented eighth and ninth grade students to the past and to a future which they may help to shape and enabled them to think of time in novel ways. In his book, "A Brief History of Time" (1988) Stephen Hawking asked: Where does the difference between past and future come from? Why do we remember the past but not the future? Through time-warp fiction, today's students may be challenged with such questions. In time, they may find the answers. (The student-composed novel, "Crisis at the Clock Tower," is attached.)