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Social Justice Books

From Social Justice Books: A Teaching for Change Project, this powerful site offers more than 60 curated lists of books on social justice and multicultural points of view for children, young adults, and educators. Book lists are organized by topic areas–including Changemakers, Disabilities, Immigration (and specific immigrant groups), Organizing, and Voting Rights! 

Emerging America Lesson Accessibility Grid

 

Emerging America's lesson plan template features a Universal Design for Learning (UDL) grid borrowed from Social Studies & Exceptional Learners (see below). Three columns call for strategies that support the UDL instructional framework. Checklist items suggest tools and activities that could effectively support each element. Brief descriptions below explain how the teacher will apply checked items. 

American Revolution and U.S. Constitution

The following set of resources from the Library of Congress was prepared for Special Education in Institutional Settings (SEIS). The set presents primary source documents and images on two main units of study: The American Revolution and the U.S. Constitution. There are abundant resources on the American Revolution and U.S. Constitution. Therefore, this set recommends a careful selection of the most engaging. Teachers and students can focus on the most valuable sources from the era for use in classroom or research settings.

Early America: Maps and Exploration

Maps, Knowledge, and Power in Medieval and Renaissance Europe

Maps are a representation of geographical space. As such, they are valuable as a source of information. Yet their makers can also use them to control or alter perceptions of that same information. In the 14th and 15th centuries, cartography, or the science of map-making, changed rapidly due to the explorations of the Americas. Use the maps below to trace some of these changes.

Primary Sources:

Mappa mundi, Hereford, c.1300 

Unexpected Connections: Using Local Primary Sources to Analyze the Five Factors of Community Development in World History

Through the examination of primary source documents demonstrating stages of community development in a community familiar to students, students will gain an understanding of Medieval History analysis of factors that occur during the development of communities. Students will work collectively, using the Library of Congress Primary Source Analysis Tool, to demonstrate their understanding of one of the following factors: Settlement, Agriculture, Towns, Population Growth, and Industrialization.

Boston, Then and Now: Change in the Urban Environment

Boston Public Schools teachers collaborated on this lesson to engage students with the sweep of American industrial and urban history. Due to Boston’s breathtaking changes in landscape, including the filling of much of Boston Harbor to create neighborhoods–the city offers a dramatic case study of change across the ages. Emerging America brings this lesson to you thanks to the outstanding map resources of the Library of Congress. Aligned to Common Core and Massachusetts State History standards

Early America: New Worlds for All Indians and Europeans in Early America

When the Pilgrims arrived at Plymouth Bay, indigenous peoples on the East Coast had been in sustained contact with European explorers and fur traders for over a hundred years. In the 17th century, however, European colonists began to permanently settle in North America. Indigenous communities found ways to adapt their cultural forms to the regular presence of Europeans, building upon knowledge amassed over the last century.

Pioneer Valley Illustrated History

Visually rich history published by Guy McLain, Director of the Lyman and Merrie Wood Museum of Springfield History. Provides a rare glimpse into the evolution and history of western Massachusetts. Topics explored include European Settlement of the Valley, the Revolution and Shays’ Rebellion, Development of Transportation and Trade in the Valley, and Expansion of Business and Industry.

Worlds Collide: First Contact Between Columbus and the Taino

UPDATED WITH NEW RESOURCES - This lesson uses primary sources to explore one of the most remarkable cultural meetings in history: Spanish sponsored Italian explorer Christopher Columbus and the Native Americans from the Taino population in the Caribbean. Two key primary sources in this lesson are a letter from Columbus to the King and Queen of Spain and a 1562 map of European attitudes toward the New World. With guidance from teachers, these documents can spark inquiry from students and encourage increased understanding of the relationship between the Spanish and the Taino. 

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