Supporting Good Teaching of ALL Learners
History, social studies, and the humanities present unique challenges to struggling learners: complex stories, abstract concepts such as “citizenship,” a huge disciplinary vocabulary, and an extensive need for background knowledge. Since our founding in 1974, the Collaborative has supported good teaching of ALL learners. Emerging America took up this work for history education in 2006 and has expanded our efforts continuously ever since. The Accessing Inquiry project advances this work as the focus of the Library of Congress Teaching with Primary Sources Program at the Collaborative. Emerging America built this digital resource to provide ongoing support for K-12 teachers of history, social studies, and humanities to challenge and nurture struggling learners. Come back often for new resources.
Since 2011, we have taught 15-hour courses–now called Accessing Inquiry–throughout Massachusetts and across the U.S. See our CES course registration page for current offerings. Earn optional graduate credit in history from Westfield State University. These courses meet Massachusetts relicensure requirements. Contact Director Rich Cairn to arrange training in your school district or state.
- Accessing Inquiry for Students with Disabilities through Primary Sources
- Accessing Inquiry for English Learners through Primary Sources
Based on support work with the teachers of the Massachusetts Special Education in Institutional Settings (SEIS) program and on participation by SPED and ESL teachers in numerous Emerging America workshops, EmergingAmerica.org is expanding offerings on this page of model lessons, assessments, classroom activities, and recommendations for other resources focused on making inquiry accessible through primary sources.
- Emerging America – Find primary source sets on Disability History through the Teaching Resources Search Tool. Here are a few sample source sets and lesson plans:
Resources and Information
- Philosophy of Universal Design for Learning (UDL)
- Disability History and Primary Documents
- Assistive Technology
- Inquiry Strategies
- Engagement Strategies
- Assessment Strategies
Find accessible social studies curriculum across a wide range of topics and grade levels. Emphasis is providing models of support for English Learners and for students with disabilities. Materials include lesson and unit plans, access to primary sources and source sets, and a variety of classroom activities. Observe a selection of videos demonstrating effective methods of classroom instruction of diverse learners. The Classroom Materials for Accessibility page is coming soon.