Teaching Materials

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.
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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.
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Howard Zinn and Hockey Pucks

Ursula Wolfe-Rocca of the Zinn Education Project talks about her article “What Sam Wineburg Gets Wrong About Teaching Howard Zinn’s A People’s History” and shares examples of the Zinn Education Project’s curriculum and pedagogy.
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Beyond slavery and the civil rights movement: Teachers should be integrating black history into their lessons

This Black History Month has been packed with controversy, with scandals and headlines revolving around blackface dominating the national conversation. But some say the singular focus on blackface distracts from the larger issues — namely, how little is known about the nation’s deeply racist history, and what is — and isn’t — taught about the black American... Read more »
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How Unions Can Help Educate By Promoting Labor History

The future of labor unions is tenable not only because of political efforts to suppress them, but also because of pedagogical oppression. American schools are not teaching students about labor unions and their fight against economic injustice. Ask any young American what they know about labor unions, and you will likely get the same response. This points to... Read more »
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How Should Climate Change be Taught in Schools Across America?

Earth frowns. With a face of green and blue, the planet’s mood is blue, too — as unblinking eyes cast a somber stare. Colored with crayons, this drawing is the schoolwork of Maya, a fifth grader from the United States. At the top sits a title: “Greenhouse Gas Effect.” Piercing Earth’s atmosphere, sharp arrows represent solar radiation,... Read more »
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History of a Canal

Poem. By Pablo Neruda. How the history of Panama has been impacted by geography and greed.
Themes: World History/Global Studies
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