“History is written by the victors.”
A concept that many are familiar with. Oftentimes, the picture of history that is provided in K-12 education is very Eurocentric and is not representative of the wide range of backgrounds that students come from. Personally, I did not begin to receive a multi-perspective version of American history until I sought out those classes in college. As a future social studies teacher, part of my philosophy has always been to give students the opportunity to consider history from a new perspective that they may not have been exposed to before.
In light of current events, during the course of this class we focused on marginalized groups. I would also say that “change” has been a major theme of this class as well, both in subject matter and being a natural consequence of the unprecedented current events that we are living through. As a result, I got to dive deeper into these subject areas as a student.
Coincidentally, looking at racial issues and social change have always been topics I’ve wanted to emphasize for my future students. These topics happened to become more relevant than ever this year, and the following posts are a reflection of my own growth and learning within these themes as well as examples of lessons that I could use with my students to help them develop their historical thinking skills while being challenged to engage with topics they may be unfamiliar with.
Three of my favorite posts, which can be seen below, all have the common theme of addressing social movements throughout American history.
In addition to giving me the freedom to dive deeper into my areas of interest, this class also pushed me to explore new tools and different ways of looking at history. Below is a link to my favorite post that is the result of an assignment that pushed me to research New Deal HOLC maps and the 1940 Census. I have never researched this kind of primary source material before, and the fact that I was able to build such a personal connection to this assignment made it incredibly interesting. I will definitely be doing something like this in my own future classroom so that my students have the chance to explore their own personal history.
My posts from this semester are not only a reflection of how I have progressed as a student, but also an example of how my future students will learn and grow when they get to take on similar assignments.