Ken Burns delivers another American history lesson, but not in his traditional manner. "The Address" (9 p.m. Tuesday, PBS) is an inspiring new documentary that tells the story of a tiny school in Putney, Vt., where the students each year are encouraged to memorize, practice and recite the Gettysburg Address.

The kids at the Greenwood School -- boys ages 11-17 -- all are dealing with a range of learning disabilities that make the assignment a major challenge.

"It's a minefield of terrors and anxieties for those boys," says Burns, who describes the film as cinema verite.

But once they master the two-minute speech Lincoln delivered at the consecration of the Soldiers' National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pa., on Nov. 19, 1863, they find healing power in the words.

"This is a story about an amazing school, and these boys, whom you will fall in love with," Burns says. "But it's also about our connection with our past. We don't memorize stuff anymore, and we should."


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