6 Virtual Exhibitions on Women Artists

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on March 26, 2021

2021 has already been a history-making year for women in civic life with the inauguration of the first woman Vice President of the United States, Kamala Harris. Along with the continuing importance of women’s political engagement, there are many additional ways that women contribute to society, challenge the status quo, and help to restore humanity and dignity to those denied it. One of these is the domain of art. We have witnessed an upsurge of artmaking inflected with social and political themes explode onto the public stage over the last year, art connected to the Black Lives Matter movement being one prominent example. This Women’s History Month, we have an opportunity to delve into the work and worlds of women artists, in particular. Founded in 1981, The National Museum of Women in the Arts describes itself as the “only major museum in the world solely dedicated to championing women through the arts,” and has curated a plethora of learning opportunities for those eager to explore women’s artmaking.

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Topics: Art, Women's History Month

Teaching in the Light of Women's History

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on March 22, 2021


This essay was originally published in March 2020 and has been updated in March 2021.

Though we often think of Women’s History Month as a time to prioritize women’s voices and contributions in the classroom, this month is also a time to examine the profound ways in which women teachers, and broader perceptions of women, have shaped the teaching profession itself. From contemporary perceptions of the profession and the compensation of its workers, to the grounds for collective action that American teachers now enjoy, none can be understood outside the patriarchal context in which modern schooling emerged. Examining this history offers not only a richer understanding of the challenges faced by today’s teachers, but reveals places where we must continue to disrupt patriarchal rhetoric if we are to cultivate school communities that do right by teachers and students. 

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Topics: Women's History Month

9 Films on Women's History + History in the Making

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on March 16, 2021


Women’s History Month is a great time for educators to consider how to incorporate women’s stories, contributions, and ideas into their classroom teaching all year. One way to access inspiration for that work is to watch films on women’s history whether with the intention of bringing them into the classroom or translating some of the themes presented into an original lesson. 

Here are 9 films worth thinking with that illustrate critical stories from American women’s history as well as women’s-history-in-the-making around the world:

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Topics: Women's History Month

Making Space for Women's History

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on March 12, 2021

The value and relevance of women’s history was in the news in late December 2020 when we learned that a new bill passed, approving the development of what will be the first women’s history museum on the National Mall. The long process that led to this approval, including considerable controversy surrounding the penultimate bill, raises compelling questions about how women’s history is valued and understood, as well as the significance of spaces like museums and monuments in shaping public memory.

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Topics: Women's History Month

6 Virtual Exhibitions and Teacher Resources for Women's History Month

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on March 10, 2021

Women’s History Month each year is a fabulous time for teachers to recommit to integrating the experiences of women and girls into instruction on history and contemporary society all year.

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Topics: Women's History Month

6 Essays on Women's History

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on March 8, 2021

Women’s History Month each year provides teachers a chance to take a deeper dive into the histories and experiences of women around the globe in work with their students.

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Topics: Women's History Month

5 New Books on Women's History

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on March 5, 2021

Women’s History Month is here again and there are abundant opportunities for educators to engage it in the classroom. But there is also an opportunity to deepen our own understanding of women’s history and contemporary experiences. Check out these 5 new books that can enrich educators’ understanding of and engagement with the power of women’s history.

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Topics: Women's History Month

9 Resources for Women's History Month

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on March 3, 2021

Women’s History Month each year is a fabulous time for teachers to recommit to integrating the experiences of women and girls into instruction on history and contemporary society all year.

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Topics: Women's History Month

Serving All Girls in the Classroom: An Interview with Arianne Thomas

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on March 26, 2020

In a recent interview, I spoke with Arianne Thomas, Director of the Aspire Program at Hathaway Brown School—Ohio’s oldest continuously operating college preparatory school for girls. The program delivers three years of tuition-free academic enrichment and leadership development programming to girls from Cleveland and Greater Cleveland communities underrepresented at the elite day school. In this conversation, Thomas addresses some of the best practices that she and colleagues use within the Hathaway Brown community to center the developmental needs of girls, alongside the diverse array of needs and experiences that different learners bring to the classroom.

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Topics: Teaching, Women's History Month, race

Disrupting Patriarchy in the Classroom with Carol Gilligan

Posted by Kaitlin Smith on March 23, 2020

In a recent presentation to the staff of Facing History, eminent Facing History Board of Scholars member Carol Gilligan shared an array of insights from her body of work on gender. Gilligan is perhaps best known for her pathbreaking 1982 book In a Different Voice in which she exposed the limitations of prevailing conceptions of men’s and women’s psychological development. There she pointed to the unique needs and priorities of women that had not previously been addressed in the psychological literature. Gilligan’s presentation of her most recent work offers a number of rich insights on the continuing significance of gender, and has provoked reflection for us around how middle and high school educators might bring these insights into their work.

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Topics: Women's History Month

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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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