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Assessment Curriculum History

Assessing Colonialism: Part II, Using Images

My interest in assessing colonialism involves the content as much as the process.  In the photograph assessment, which I am currently grading, I want students to address the racism inherent in both colonialism itself and how it is presented in textbooks.  The assignment, however, raises as many issues as it closes.  I am finding it much […]

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Assessment History

Assessing Colonialism: Part I, the Process

Last Spring I piloted an assessment of  student understanding of the “new” Imperialism in regular level World History classes with eleventh graders.  Students created google slides centered on photos of imperialism.  Students interpreted the photos and analyzed causation, with three slides–before, during, and after–for each photo.  I modified a History Alive! World Connections lesson, and students used History […]

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Curriculum History

White innocence and legality

History and social studies teachers should be wary of the ways that whiteness shaped and shapes who is included and who is excluded.

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Curriculum History

History, white folks need it now more than ever

I’m frankly a little embarrassed as a history teacher that I was slow to take seriously the popular support for and acquiescence to the possible authoritarianism of President-Elect Trump (for more on Trump’s authoritarianism see @sarahkendzior and Brendan Nyhan). Despite extensive reading and research since I started teaching in 1990, America, its past and present, is always more racist than […]

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Curriculum History

Comparing Textbook Treatments of the Iranian Revolution

UPDATE: Resources for the lesson described in this post are now on this page. For high school history teachers, comparing secondary source treatments of historical events is no longer just a good idea, it’s the law. In Minnesota that’s state social studies standard 9.4.1.2.2, benchmark: “Evaluate alternative interpretations of historical events; use historical evidence to support or refute those interpretations.”  This […]

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Assessment History Uncovering History

DBQs for everyone

In a decade of teaching AP History, first Euro and now World, I have developed an appreciation for the Document-based question.  Students will ultimately forget many of the historical facts that we cover in AP History. The skills developed practicing and writing DBQ should be much more durable and transferable, because students practice in my […]

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History

Race, Space, and Privilege

Recent events have reminded me that as a white teacher engaging students in many racially tinged topics I need to foreground my own privileged social position.  Part of this privilege is the possibility of dismissing race as something that happens elsewhere and to other people.  My daughter just turned thirteen, and the guidance that I […]

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History Uncovering History

Reading in between sources

As part of my summer reading program I recently finished Alan Taylor’s The Internal Enemy: Slavery and War in Virginia, 1772-1832, the winner of this year’s Pulitzer Prize for History.  I found it worthy of the award: scholarly, insightful, and engaging. As many things do, it got me reflecting on teaching historical thinking. I particularly appreciated Taylor’s very transparent use of […]

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Assessment History Uncovering History

Investigating the Montgomery Bus Boycott

In May shortly after returning to the classroom from covering a maternity leave elsewhere in the building. I facilitated student inquiry into the Montgomery Bus Boycott using SHEG’s activity  I had been out when the trimester began and had not taught US History earlier this year.  So, the students were all new to me, and it was […]

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Assessment History Uncovering History

How to Assess Historical Thinking

Contribution to April’s History Blog Circle: Historical thinking is important, but it’s hard, even “unnatural”.   Likewise, assessing historical thinking is daunting, but very necessary.  Both doing and assessing historical thinking require practice.  Lots of it.  This practice is worthwhile because reading and writing like historians are skills that students will use in college, career, and civic […]

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