Here at Junior Historians, things have been picking up steam. We have been ramping up our content on this space (as well as on twitter and instagram) and sharing more about how we utilize primary sources in the middle school classroom. We have a lot planned for 2015, so please bookmark our site and make us a part of your online reading routine.
This week marked the start of the second trimester at Harlem Academy and the start of two new Junior Historians' Field Manuals. This term the seventh grade will be investigating 19th century US History and the eighth grade will be investigating the Cold War.
Let's take a closer look at what's in store ...
The Culminating Project:
A New Abolitionist Anthology
In my seventh grade United States History course we take an entire trimester to investigate slavery in the 19th century. We examine the conditions of chattel slavery, the works of abolitionists, the era of failed compromises, the Civil War, and the Reconstruction Era utilizing only primary source materials. In creating my abolitionism anthology, I intend to create a supplementary workbook for my students to guide them in researching and discussing the evolution of abolitionist writings. In particular, I wish my collection to track the varied justifications and arguments presented by 19th century writers to push the issue of abolitionism to the forefront in the 19th century.
The collection will culminate with excerpts from the Emancipation Proclamation, Lincoln’s second inaugural address, and the text of the thirteenth amendment. Students will then discuss and debate the essential question of whether or not Lincoln deserves the moniker, the Great Emancipator. Students will also identify the argument or justification from the anthology that they feel best exemplifies the abolitionist spirit – in that it is the most persuasive.
As we wind our way closer to Thanksgiving break and the end of the first trimester at Harlem Academy, my seventh and eighth grade Junior Historians are hard at work on their final assessment of the term. Next week we will be taking final exams, covering all material since September, but today we focus on the American Revolutionary War and the Civil Rights movement in the early 1960s. Both assessments challenge the students to defend a given thesis both by rote and in utilizing a given source document.
Try your hand at a Junior Historians' assessment.
It's Friday, which means that it is ASSESSMENT DAY in Mr. Robertson's U.S. History class at Harlem Academy. In the 8th grade we have been examining the legal roots of segregation and its impact on the African American population (particularly in the South) and the nation as a whole. A big focus in this unit was the unequal treatment of African Americans in the armed services and the role of President Truman in sparking the modern civil rights movement. I've attached a copy of today's assessment. Try your luck and see how you stack up against my 8th graders. You can submit your answers to firstname.lastname@example.org.