Choices in Little Rock: An Approach to Teaching the Civil Rights Movement

July 23, 2019
Choices in Little Rock

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Choices in Little Rock: An Approach to Teaching the Civil Rights Movement

Please note priority will be given to 8th grade CPS Social Studies teachers. This seminar is also recommended for upper middle and high school social studies, civics, and humanities teachers committed to implementing a three-week (or more!) Facing History unit from Chicagoland schools.   

In 1957, nine black teenagers faced the threats of angry mobs when they attempted to enter Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas. The desegregation of Central High School ignited a crisis historian Taylor Branch describes as “the most severe test of the Constitution since the Civil War.” We will examine this key moment in U.S. history and learn new ways to engage students in the issues raised by the American civil rights movement and their implications today.

In this two-day workshop, teachers will:

  • Learn current scholarship on the history of the civil rights movement through a case study method that focuses on human behavior and decision making.

  • Increase their ability to facilitate respectful classroom discussions on difficult issues such as race and racism, ethics, and justice in a way that invites personal reflection and critical analysis.

  • Discover new teaching strategies that help students interrogate text, think critically, and discussion controversial issues respectfully.

NOTE for CPS teachers: As part of the CPS Curriculum Project, this workshop is offered free of charge to Chicago Public Schools educators. Classroom resources for each participant will be provided, including a resource book, 5-week unit plan with C3-aligned summative assessment and informed action task as well as student guides and journals for each student (available in Spanish).

Illinois educators can earn 14 Clock Hours for full participation in this course. 


Facing History and Ourselves
2 N LaSalle
2nd Floor Conference Center
Chicago, IL 60602
July 23, 2019 - July 24, 2019
8:30 am - 3:30 pm

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