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Restricting Immigration to the US

This lesson uses the 21st century “travel ban,” ruled constitutional in 2018, as an entry point to explore previous shifts in US immigration policy. More specifically, students will use primary sources to examine social contexts of three specific immigration laws (Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, Immigration Acts of 1921 & 1924, and Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952) in order to understand who was banned or excluded from the US and why.

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. 

Disability History Timelines

Analysis of the timelines below can help students to locate important events in Disability History in a larger historical framework. Timelines also offer opportunities to explore the impacts of activism, policy, and social change. Disability History timelines work best when students are also gaining contextual background knowledge about larger social forces and events. Thus these particular timelines are recommended for grades 6-12. 

 

Scan Multiple Timelines 

Japan’s Attack on Pearl Harbor

The Japanese attack on December 7, 1941 at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii forever altered the course of WWII. Although the attack left the American fleet crippled, it failed to strike a fatal blow. From the death and destruction of December 7th rose a nation dedicated to rebuilding and avenging the loss of Pearl Harbor. Using this primary source set students will be able to evaluate how the attack impacted those who were there and how they responded on that fateful day.

Social Security: What is the Federal Responsibility to Care for Vulnerable People?

In this lesson, students learn about the Social Security Act and its provisions to care for the elderly, the unemployed, mothers and children, and children and adults with disabilities.  Students will examine several primary source images and documents related to the New Deal era, using a primary source analysis organizer. The lesson offers options in how students can show their learning. This lesson plan has a special feature: the teacher who authored it offers reflections on how teaching the lesson worked with her class when she taught it the first time.

Puerto Rican Identity

Civics and U.S. History courses raise the question: What does it mean to be an American? The case of Puerto Rico is an interesting one because Puerto Ricans find themselves in limbo between American citizenship and Puerto Rican nationalism. The following primary source sets explore the unique relationship between Puerto Rico and the United States including the different factors that influence Puerto Rican identity, including nationalism, political status, culture, and migration. By examining these primary sources, students will gain an understanding of:

Propaganda Posters of the Spanish Civil War

Emerging America, in a partnership with the Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives, has a produced a primary source-filled lesson on the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939) – arguably the start of World War II. In this complex conflict, all sides used propaganda to sway the opinions of Spanish citizens and nations around the globe. The most apparent form of propaganda used was posters created by each side of the war. The Library of Congress has over 120 colorfully detailed posters. Students will use these posters to discuss and evaluate the tools of persuasion.

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

Exemplary Assessment (DDM): Changing Waterways – Grade 7 Geography

A model district-determined measure for 7th grade Geography, developed by the Collaborative in 2015 for the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. A pre-assessment utilizes documents on the building of the Quabbin Dam in Central Massachusetts in the 1930s. The post-assessment utilizes documents on the building of the Aswan Dam in Egypt in the 1960s. Students use graphic organizers to prepare and then write a short essay on the costs and benefits of large water management projects.

Geography DDM Directions:

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