Teaching American History

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Idaho 2007 Grant Abstracts
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Grantee Name:Idaho Joint School District 241, ID
Project Name:Myths vs. Realities: America's Changing Frontier
Project Director:Wayne Davis
Number of Teachers Served:90
Number of School Districts Served:5
Number of Students Served:3,000
Grade Levels:K-12
Partners:The University of Idaho, the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, and Lewis-Clark State College
Topics:Year 1, Forming the Frontier; Year 2, Fencing the Frontier; Year 3, The New Frontier
Methods:Seminars, coaching, workshops, e-learning tutorials

The "Frontier" partnership is aimed at providing professional development in American history content and instruction, building on progress made under a previous TAH grant. While the first grant effectively provided teachers with a survey of history up to the Civil War, this project will extend the subject matter to the present day and create and core group of 30 master teachers. Sustainability will be encouraged by creation of an Innovation Configuration document to guide classrooms in the future. Topics in Year 1 include: the Louisiana Purchase, Lewis and Clark, Texas Annexation, California gold rush, and Nez Pierce Treaty. In Year 2, teachers will study: the transcontinental railroad, Chinese-Japanese immigrants, Idaho's statehood, the 1905 crisis, and World War I. Year 3 focuses on globalization, the New Deal, World War II, Civil Rights movement, and the environmental movement.

Grantee Name:Independent School District of Boise, ID
Project Name:Political Liberty vs. Social Equality: Three Centuries of Interpreting American History
Project Director:Russ Heller
Number of Teachers Served:30
Number of School Districts Served:1
Number of Students Served:5,709
Grade Levels:K-12
Partners:The Boise State University Center for Idaho History and Politics and Colleges of Education, Social Sciences, and Public Affairs, Idaho Council for History Education, Hispanic Cultural Center of Idaho, Basque Museum and Cultural Center
Topics:The Revolutionary War, Constitutional Origins, Tipping Toward Republicanism, Jacksonian America and Origins of the Civil War, Civil War and Reconstruction, Native Americans, Railroad Barons and the Westward Expansion, the Progressive Era, the Great Depression and New Deal, World War II and the Origins of the Cold War
Methods:Summer institutes, annual conference, seminars, workshops, mentoring/coaching

By building teachers' knowledge of traditional American history and helping them translate that knowledge into higher student achievement, this project seeks to meet the professional development needs of a district in which the percentage of students with limited English proficiency has increased over 4,000 percent in the past 15 years. Five integrated instructional components will support teachers in developing historical thinking skills and improving instructional skills. The project focuses on the relationship between political liberty and social equity in American history, exploring how to frame historical questions in Year 1, how to analyze evidence in Year 2, and how to present historical arguments in Year 3. Topics range from Lewis and Clark's visit to Idaho to Japanese internment in the state.

Last Modified: 10/23/2007