Thursday, July 19, 2012
As this years summer institute concludes I will continue to tell educators that this program is one of the best if not the best for of continuing educations. Over the years we have been provided with the opportunity to listen to some of the best professors lecturing in their field of expertise and sharing how they present the material to their college classes. We have also had the opportunity to listen to fellow teachers who have created amazing lesson plans and are willing to share them with us in order for us to improve on our teaching. Over the years I have taken a great number of graduate courses, this History Connected program ranks up there with the best of those course. Not only has it provided me with in-depth information in my content area, but it has also provided me with the tools (lessons) to carry it out. Using this past summer institute as an example, I was very impressed Ron Woolley’s session on “Selling Empire: Pears Soap and Roosevelt Corollary”. Ron showed us how he implements the Pear Soap advertisement to analyze foreign policy and the Roosevelt Corollary. Not only is this something that I plan to use in my classroom when I cover this time period in history, but it also provided me with the tool/activity that I can implement with other advertisement that were presented in history. One historian that really stood out to me during this summer institute was Cathal Nolan. What I took from his lecture was not only the content that he provided for us, but what I thought was just as important was his opposing viewpoint when compared to other lecturers throughout the week. As teachers of history we have a great responsibility to present both sides of the argument on every historical issue that we cover. We also need to hide our personal bias as we cover this material. Having both sides of an issue presented to us as teachers, is just as important so we can provide our students with a balanced argument. These are just two examples of many that I could provide for the excellent program that we have been fortunate enough to be a part of. I hope that we can continue to meet and share in some capacity in the future.