The Madeira History Department is committed to supporting the mission of the School in the materials it uses, the skills it emphasizes, and the instructional techniques it uses. 

History classes will provide students with an understanding of the world through analysis of the past and discussions of the present. Students are asked to consider the interconnectedness between their lives, the lives of their communities, and the historical events we study. 

By exploring these connections, a student will develop both a strong sense of herself and her role in the world. The History Department seeks to develop the essential skills of research, data analysis, writing, oral presentation, and critical thinking that will prepare each Madeira graduate to continue her studies successfully at the college level and prepare her for the world of work after college. More importantly, the history curriculum prepares students to be compassionate, interested, and effective citizens in the global community. 

Available Courses


Class of 2020 and Beyond

Classes of 2019

Noting the requirements of most colleges, the History Department recommends that students take at least three years of history.


Andrew Sharp

History Department Chair, History Teacher

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Mr. Sharp taught at Madeira from 1995 to 2000 and returned in 2004. He earned a bachelor's degree in Political Science and English from Connecticut College and a master's degree in International Politics from The George Washington University. Before becoming head of the History Department, he was assistant academic dean.

Shana Barnett

History Teacher

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Ms. Shana Barnett joined the History Department in 2014. Previously she worked for three years as a humanities teacher at High Tech High, a project-based-learning charter school in San Diego, CA. As an instructor, Ms. Barnett has a strong background facilitating collaborative learning and creative problem solving through projects. She earned her bachelor’s degree in the History of Art and Visual Culture at the University of California, Santa Cruz. After a semester studying the Italian language in Siena, Italy, Ms. Barnett returned to the University of California to participate in the Stevenson College Junior Fellows Program and teach an undergraduate philosophy course. 

Larry Pratt

History Teacher

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Larry Pratt returns as a full time teacher in the History Department after four years conducting nonprofit work in young voter turnout. Mr. Pratt began teaching history at Madeira in 2000.  During his four year absence, he continued to substitute for Madeira History teachers and assisted coaching the Varsity Basketball team.  

Matthew Sudnik

History Teacher

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Matthew Sudnik joined the History Department in 2016. Previously Mr. Sudnik worked for nine years at Central Catholic High School in Pittsburgh, PA, where he directed the scholars program and taught world history, human geography, and humanities. He holds a B.A. in Philosophy from The Catholic University of America and a M.T.S. in Religious Studies from Harvard Divinity School. 

Kathryn Jones

History Teacher

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Kathryn Jones joined the History Department in 2016. Previously she worked at the American Community School in Beirut, Lebanon, where she taught world and Middle Eastern history. She is passionate about promoting global citizenship, and has done so in the classroom, through Model United Nations, and through student-led community service initiatives with refugees. She earned her bachelor’s degree in international relations from Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, Massachusetts and her MA in Middle Eastern studies from the American University of Beirut.