Teaching Materials

Zinn is ‘In’ Again

The latest controversy over Howard Zinn’s A People’s History of the United States, brought on by proposed legislation from Arkansas State Rep. Kim Hendren, is at an end. The bill died in committee, so Zinn — and everything by or

Read More

Can educating kids about unions prepare them for the future of work?

By Bill Bigelow “Wear green on St. Patrick’s Day or get pinched.” That pretty much sums up the Irish-American “curriculum” that I learned when I was in school. Yes, I recall a nod to the so-called Potato Famine, but it was mentioned only in passing. Sadly, today’s high school textbooks continue to largely ignore the famine, despite the fact that it was responsible for unimaginable suffering and the deaths of more than a million Irish peasants, and that it triggered the greatest wave of Irish immigration in U.S. history. Nor do textbooks make any attempt to help students link famines past and present.
Read More

Teaching Class Solidarity

By Bill Bigelow “Wear green on St. Patrick’s Day or get pinched.” That pretty much sums up the Irish-American “curriculum” that I learned when I was in school. Yes, I recall a nod to the so-called Potato Famine, but it was mentioned only in passing. Sadly, today’s high school textbooks continue to largely ignore the famine, despite the fact that it was responsible for unimaginable suffering and the deaths of more than a million Irish peasants, and that it triggered the greatest wave of Irish immigration in U.S. history. Nor do textbooks make any attempt to help students link famines past and present.
Read More

Teaching kids how battles about race from 150 years ago mirror today’s conflicts

By Bill Bigelow It’s impossible to walk away from the film without understanding that at the heart of the struggle over the Pentagon Papers was the exposure of government lying about the war in Vietnam. The film offers papers like the New York Times and the Washington Post a warm pat on the back for publishing the Pentagon Papers and exposing these lies. But Spielberg’s film ignores the fact that there was abundant evidence of deceit long before these newspapers decided to publish the Pentagon Papers in June of 1971.
Read More

Forgotten in the classroom: The Reconstruction era

By Bill Bigelow It’s impossible to walk away from the film without understanding that at the heart of the struggle over the Pentagon Papers was the exposure of government lying about the war in Vietnam. The film offers papers like the New York Times and the Washington Post a warm pat on the back for publishing the Pentagon Papers and exposing these lies. But Spielberg’s film ignores the fact that there was abundant evidence of deceit long before these newspapers decided to publish the Pentagon Papers in June of 1971.
Read More