From the H-BORDERLANDS listserv:
This institute for school teachers is designed to appeal to both those who teach AP US History and AP World History, putting the US story in global perspective.
APPLICATIONS ARE DUE MARCH 1, 2012
NEH 2012 Summer Institute for School Teachers
American Frontiers in Global Perspective June 24 through July 14, 2012
The very word “frontier” calls out historical and mythic images for Americans and people around the world. The U.S. story undoubtedly is unique in its own ways, and it often has overshadowed similar stories from other parts of the world in popular culture. But have frontiers made U.S. history exceptional and beyond comparison, as Frederick Jackson Turner claimed in his famous “frontier thesis”? This institute focuses on reconsidering the uniqueness and nature of U.S. frontiers and closely associated ideas of American “exceptionalism.” We will look at colonial North American and U.S. frontiers both on their own terms and from global and comparative perspectives. We think this approach will offer you dynamic new material for your social studies and U.S. and world history classes.
This history is not just for scholars. As teachers we can better meet our goal of educating the next generation-as Americans, world “citizens,” and participants in a global economy-if our students learn about U.S. history in a global context and see how world history relates to that of their own nation.
Many students in U.S. schools are themselves immigrants (or their children), and they can more easily see how their experiences fit into the U.S. story when it is taught in ways shaped by global perspectives.
Our three-week institute will be held at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan. It will host 25 NEH Summer Scholars with a $2700 stipend to help defray costs. Topics and events will include:
* Turner’s “frontier thesis” and alternative approaches from around the world.
* The mythology of the American frontier and its influence on American identity.
* Frontiers in the Midwest, South, and far West.
* A fieldtrip to Lowell, Michigan, to explore the history of its logging frontier.
* Native peoples as settlers, notably the Cherokee in the Oklahoma Territory.
* The “Indian Wars” and comparisons to wars in Canada, Mexico and South Africa.
* Is the cowboy “American”? Cattle workers and ranching from Argentina to Canada.
* Gold rushes from California to British Columbia, the Yukon, and Australia.
* Frontiers and overseas empires-similar forms of expansion or essential different?
* The impact of frontier era land law on the U.S. West in the twentieth century.
In addition to studying these topics together with an eye to how to teach them in the school classroom, participants will develop curricular materials and share their work with each other, bringing home a body of classroom appropriate material. We encourage you to consider topics that we have not been able to fit in the institute schedule.
Professor of History
3201 Burton Street SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49546-4301