Engage! (ing) Summer Reads

Posted by Tracy O'Brien on June 13, 2019



Summer is a time for relaxation. However, many of us also seek books and stories that will immerse us in the experiences of others, or will help us stay engaged in making a better world. Here are six picks that will teach, challenge, and inspire us.

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Topics: Democracy, Immigration, Race and Membership, Holocaust Education, LGBTQ, Reading List

Aliens in Their Own Land: The Incarceration of Japanese Americans

Posted by Brian Fong on May 28, 2019

Travel 230 miles north of Los Angeles to Owens Valley at the foot of the Sierra Nevada Mountain range and you will find a white concrete obelisk with black Japanese writing rising out of the desert. Only a few simple gravestones stand in the background a few feet away. Today, the obelisk is one of the few remaining structures from the Manzanar War Relocation Center—an American concentration camp where Japanese Americans were held during World War II. 

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Topics: Democracy, Immigration, Japanese American Incarceration

3 Resources for Teaching About Immigration

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on May 22, 2019

In our present political climate, discussion of immigration is both essential and inevitable. But how can we confront these polarizing issues in the classroom in ways that deepen empathy, deliver vital historical context, and promote critical thinking? Check out these three rich resources designed for educators who are interested in addressing immigration in the classroom:

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Topics: Democracy, Immigration

Dehumanization at the Border

Posted by Roger Brooks on June 22, 2018

At the end of a heart-wrenching week, I want to share my perspective on the ongoing humanitarian crisis unfolding on the southern border of the United States.

As you know, Facing History and Ourselves has devoted our attention and concern to similar debates over immigration, the border, and DACA over the last several years. Yet this latest news compels me to reaffirm one of the most profoundly held values of our organization:

We oppose the dehumanization of any group of people, in any form.

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Topics: Immigration

How DACA is Affecting My Dreamer Students

Posted by Trevor Gardner on April 19, 2018

The March 6 deadline for DACA has come and gone with President Trump announcing earlier this month, "DACA is dead." This has left thousands of Dreamers, as they are called, in limbo and uncertain of their status in the United States. Read how one Facing History teacher is seeing the effects of this uncertainty in his San Francisco Bay Area school.

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Topics: Immigration

Tasting History: How to Teach Immigration to a Class of Immigrants

Posted by Jessica Lander on November 27, 2017

In my US history classes this fall, we’ve been exploring the journeys of immigrants who came to these shores early in the 20th century. We have listened to accounts from Ellis Island and examined Emma Lazarus’ inscription on the Statue of Liberty.

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Topics: Immigration

To Understand Immigration Today, Look At Your Own Family History

Posted by Dan Sigward on October 5, 2017

On October 3, 1965 President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Immigration and Naturalization Act (INA). Previous immigration policies from the 1920s had set national-origin quotas, which discriminated against immigrants who were not from northern Europe. By abolishing these quotas, the INA contributed to a significant shift in demographics in the United States over the last 52 years. 

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Topics: Immigration, We and They

Why Teach About Migration? Because It's the Story of Humankind

Posted by Adam Strom on August 24, 2017

It is August, a time when, although technically on vacation, many educators in the United States have already turned their attention to their classrooms. Some teachers are buying supplies; others are rewriting lessons and curricula. Most are doing both. A lot of us are thinking about our students and how we can create learning environments that will allow all of them to thrive.

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Topics: Immigration

Use These Four Tips to Welcome New Students Into Your Classroom

Posted by Stacey Perlman on August 2, 2017

Classrooms are meant to be safe spaces for students to learn new lessons, share their thoughts, and understand the world around them. This can be challenging for new studentsparticularly those from different countriesbut it’s essential to students' academic and personal growth to feel included and valued. Creating a welcoming environment can take a little extra work, but it’s possible and there are small, easy ways to do it. 

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Topics: Immigration, Safe Schools, School Culture

Journey to America: What's Your Story?

Posted by Dan Sigward on March 23, 2017

Every family in the United States originated from somewhere else. From Native Americans who migrated across a land bridge to North America to immigrants who sailed aboard a steamship to Ellis Island, many chose to come to America. Hundreds of thousands of others were brought here against their will aboard slave ships. 

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Topics: Immigration, Holocaust and Human Behavior, current events, We and They

At Facing History and Ourselves, we value conversation—in classrooms, in our professional development for educators, and online. When you comment on Facing Today, you're engaging with our worldwide community of learners, so please take care that your contributions are constructive, civil, and advance the conversation.

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Welcome to Facing Today, a Facing History blog. Facing History and Ourselves combats racism and antisemitism by using history to teach tolerance in classrooms around the globe.

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