Teaching American History

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Connecticut 2004 Grant Abstracts
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Grantee: Capitol Region Education Council, Hartford, CT
Project Name: The Charter Oak Collaborative: Teaching American History in the Capitol Region
Project Director: Anne Raymond (860) 524-4019
Funding: $960,000
Number of Teachers Served: 80
Number of School Districts Served: 7
Number of Students Served: No information available

This project brings together a consortium of organizations, including the University of Connecticut's History Department and Neag School of Education, Connecticut State Department of Education, 7 Capitol Region school districts, and 13 museums/historical societies in an initiative designed to bring significant change to the way U.S. history is taught in grades 8, 10, and 11. Middle and high school teacher participants attend content-rich summer institutes, and 10 school-year workshops on primary source materials and effective teaching strategies. Presentations and materials will be made available to the other 28 public school districts within the Capitol Region Education Council. Historical themes to be addressed include: Change and Continuity in American Democracy: Ideas, Institutions, Practices and Controversies; The Gathering and Interactions of Peoples, Cultures and Ideas; Economic and Technological Changes and Their Relation to Society, Ideas and the Environment; and The Changing Role of America in the World.

Grantee: Hartford Public Schools, Hartford, CT
Project Name: Teaching American History Grant Program - Hartford Public Schools
Project Director: Ilene V. Lowenstein (860) 695-8665
Funding: $926,250
Number of Teachers Served: 40
Number of School Districts Served: 1
Number of Students Served: No information available

The Hartford Public Schools will join Connecticut Historical Society and Trinity College to offer professional development aimed at: (1) improving teaching quality and raising fifth-grade student achievement in traditional American history by training a cohort of 30 fifth-grade teachers; and (2) strengthening the existing Hartford Public School Teaching American History initiative for middle and high school teachers, by developing a 10-member Teacher Support Team. Participants will attend professional development sessions and programs at historic-cultural sites related to the content of the 5th grade American history curriculum, which covers the period of pre-contact through the Early Republic. Teachers will learn how to systematically use materials and field study experiences that appeal to a variety of learning styles; engage students actively in the learning process; and use local sources to reinforce major themes in American history. The Connecticut Historical Society will provide Resource Activity Packets with primary source documents and reproduction artifacts, along with strategies for using these materials in the classroom. U.S. history professors from Trinity College will serve as lecturers and resources. The 10 middle and high school teachers on the Teacher Support Team will receive advanced training in both traditional American history content and mentoring/coaching skills.

Grantee: Windham Public Schools, Willimantic, CT
Project Name: The Power of Local Voices and Action in Historical Context: Teaching Traditional American History in Northeastern Connecticut
Project Director: Paula Colen (860) 455-0707
Funding: $692,838
Number of Teachers Served: 65
Number of School Districts Served: 10
Number of Students Served: No information available

Windham Public Schools is partnering with 9 other school districts, EASTCONN, a regional service center serving 36 school districts, the University of Connecticut, 6 museums, 2 historical societies, Connecticut State's Children's Librarian and the State Troubadour to provide professional development for 65 history teachers in grades 5-12 that will result in improved learning outcomes, a stand-alone theme-driven curriculum in U.S. history, and a guide for meaningful integration of local resources into teaching practices. Goals include building a community of practice to reduce professional isolation and improvement of teacher content knowledge and pedagogical skills. The program includes intensive summer institutes, follow-up workshops, mentoring, exemplary classroom practices and ongoing technical and collegial support. Institute and workshop content focuses on: Revolution and the New Nation (1754-1820), Expansion and Reform (1801-1861), Civil War and Reconstruction (1850-1877) and the Development of the Industrial U.S. (1870-1900)

Last Modified: 06/08/2005