Professional Development for Schools & Districts | Facing History & Ourselves
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Professional Development for Schools & Districts

Explore our industry-leading educator workshops and see how you can implement our transformational approach at your school.

Get Started with Facing History 

Professional Development and Educator Support

Our professional development offerings are designed and led by experienced former school leaders and teachers. 

Whether you’re searching for professional development opportunities designed to help teachers implement specific curriculum or sessions that can help strengthen the educational practices of the educators in your school more broadly, we have something to meet your needs.

What you can expect when you partner with us

All of our programs are designed to help educators develop these core competencies:

  • Nurture student-centered classroom communities
  • Establish identity and belonging as central to students' academic learning
  • Promote inquiry-based learning, perspective-taking, and deliberative skills
  • Foster empathy, ethical reflection, moral reasoning, and civic agency

Each starter workshop includes:

  • Research-backed pedagogy facilitated by Facing History program staff
  • Access to all of Facing History’s best- in-class curricula materials
  • Up to two hours of post-workshop instructional support 

Where we work:

We currently serve schools and districts in all 50 states.

Facing History professional development is solutions oriented...staff come away able to think through how you might improve outcomes for kids.
— Emily Feltes, Principal

Curriculum-Based Professional Development

All of our curricula are informed by and align with leading national standards in the fields of social studies and English Language Arts, including frameworks from the National Council for Social Studies (NCSS), the Common Core, and the National Council of Teachers of English.

We currently offer subject-specific, curriculum-based professional development offerings that leverage our resources designed for use in middle and high school US History, World History, humanities, social studies, civics, and English Language Arts courses. 

Choose from:

  • Facing History’s Approach to Teaching Social Studies (Half Day)
    We introduce educators to our approach to social studies education and share tools to help them build learning environments where students are able to grapple with the complex histories, choices, and actions of individuals, groups, and institutions in the past and present. During this interactive session, we will share resources and model teaching strategies that can be used in middle and high school social studies classrooms. 
  • Facing History’s Approach to ELA (Half Day)
    This offering introduces educators to Facing History’s approach to teaching secondary English Language Arts (ELA) that can be used to support common instructional formats: text sets, whole-class reads, and book clubs. Participants will explore Facing History’s modular collection that invites students to explore the complexity of identity and develop a sense of agency as they reflect on what it means to grow up in the world today. This workshop is offered as 90-min and half day versions.
  • Introduction to Holocaust and Genocide Education (90 Mins)  
    At Facing History, we believe that core to the act of teaching is instilling in young people a sense of agency to stand up to bigotry and hate, and to make choices for a more just and equitable world. Genocide education provides us with a crucial opportunity to weave together historical case studies and, tragically, ongoing current events including the recent rise in antisemitism. This session introduces participants to Facing History’s approach to teaching about genocide, with a focus on our resources for teaching about the Holocaust.
  • Teaching with Current Events (90 Mins)
    Engaging with current events is an essential part of educating young people to be informed and humane participants in society, helping them develop the capacity to examine issues from multiple perspectives and think critically about the world around them. This session explores our popular Current Events Collection and offers guidance and strategies for how to address trending news and current events in the classroom. Participants will leave with tools and resources designed to help navigate challenging news topics with intention, help students develop the capacity to examine issues from multiple perspectives, and strengthen their ability to think critically about the world around them.
  • Community Matters: Facing History’s Approach to Advisory (90 Mins)
    Advisories serve as student-centered spaces, facilitated by a trusted adult, where honest questioning, discussion, and social and academic growth can occur. Successful advisory also offers opportunities for students to build empathy, break down stereotypes, and build their voices.  This session introduces educators to Facing History’s advisory curriculum, Community Matters,  which contains activities and resources to create a welcoming learning environment for students that helps break down stereotypes and promotes a sense of community.  
Participants talking to one another at Race and Membership workshop

Experience Facing History Professional Development First-Hand

Join us for an upcoming Explorations workshop to get more insight into what it’s like to work with Facing History and how we can support your goals to improve student outcomes, increase student engagement, and support teacher efficacy.

Register for Free

Adult Learning for Building Engaging, Inclusive, and Caring Schools 

In addition to curriculum-based professional learning, we offer professional learning designed to develop educator competencies, strengthen morale and school culture, and inspire educators. These sessions are designed to be implemented by whole schools or districts and are appropriate for all school staff regardless of subject area or grade level. 

Choose from:

  • Introduction to Teaching for Equity and Justice (90 Mins)  
    Our Teaching for Equity & Justice (TEJ) program is an invitation to join us in working to build an educational culture where everyone can thrive. This professional learning will center the importance of mitigating and dismantling historical inequities that exist within school structures and policies. We will provide an overview of how the Teaching for Equity & Justice (TEJ) program focuses on educator mindsets and strengthens school and district approaches to building an inclusive culture.
  • Building Inclusive Teams and a Community of Care (90 Mins or Full Day) 
    Successful Social Emotional Learning implementation depends on how well staff work together to facilitate SEL instruction, foster a positive school community, and model social and emotional competence (CASEL). This offering introduces educators and administrators to our CASEL endorsed strategies and tools they can use to develop reflective, inclusive classrooms designed to support social emotional learnings. This professional learning experience is designed to guide educators and administrators through the exploration of what it means to engage all stakeholders in activities and content that support the five CASEL (SEL) competencies: self - awareness, social awareness, self-management, relationship building, responsible decision making. 
  • Teaching for Democracy: Activating Student Voice and Agency (Full Day) 
    At a time of rising threats to democracy in the United States and around the world, the civic mission of schools is more important than ever. This professional learning experience explores the interdisciplinary nature of civics and how all educators can directly promote democracy and student voice in the school setting. It will provide educators with resources to develop civic knowledge, skills and dispositions that support the development of student voice to increase students’ civic engagement and agency.
  • Navigating Crucial Conversations with Staff and Students (90 Mins)
    In these polarized times, how do teachers talk about things that matter? This interactive workshop builds on concepts from our Fostering Civil Discourse guide and invites school administrators and teachers to experience and practice strategies that support respectful conversations and perspective taking around potentially challenging or polarizing topics. Attendees will leave with ready-to-use tools for navigating crucial conversations while building inclusive learning environments.
  • Back to School: Building Community for Connection and Learning  (90 Mins)
    Before students can focus on what they are being asked to learn and do in the classroom, they must feel safe, connected, and emotionally secure. This professional learning explores teaching strategies and flexible resources designed to help you get to know your students as individuals and facilitate the process of creating an open, supportive, and reflective classroom community. Starting off the school year with effective teaching demands that educators prioritize the social-emotional needs of their students and build strong relationships.  In addition, classroom routines will be modeled that teachers can implement from day one to support effective learning and meaningful engagement with contemporary issues and concerns in your homeroom, advisory or academic courses.

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