Monday, May 1, 2017

Consider Applying for the Charles Redd Center Teaching Western History Award

Do you have a great western history lesson plan? Consider applying for the Charles Redd Center Teaching Western History Award. Submission deadline is August 1, 2017

Billings elementary librarian Ruth Ferris was one of the awardees last year; she said it was an amazing experience.

About the Award: 

The Western History Association and the Charles Redd Center are sponsoring four K-12 Teaching awards that will provide teachers the opportunity to attend and present at the Western History Association Annual Conference in San Diego, California, November 1-4, 2017. Selected teachers will share their lesson plans and teaching strategies at a K-12 teaching panel on November 4.

The Award includes the following: conference registration, award banquet ticket, ticket to the opening reception, and $500 towards conference-related costs such as hotel, travel, conference tours, or Continuing Education Credits. An added benefit is the opportunity to be in conversation with leading scholars in the field of Western history, with your lesson ideas and pedagogical expertise adding significantly to the field.

Application Materials Must Include:
  • Resume
  • Short statement (one page) of how winning the award will benefit you and your students
  • One letter of recommendation (principal, administrator, colleague, etc.)
  • Lesson Plan (any grade level K-12) on the North American West pertaining to the conference theme, “Against the Grain.” We consider the North American West to include northern Mexico and western Canada as well as the western United States. The lesson plan must include examples of Active Learning and Assessment and be factually correct. Include a bibliography of materials and sources used to create the lesson and reference any historical scholarship upon which the lesson is based. Lesson plans must also adhere to the scoring guidelines in the rubric.

Conference Theme:

The WHA 2017 conference theme is “Against the Grain,” emphasizing approaches that challenge traditional ways of thinking about western history. As you consider lesson plan development, ask: what preconceived notions do students bring to the study of western history? How do you challenge and complicate student thinking on these subjects? What innovative approaches can best be employed to encourage students to look at western history in new ways? How has the conception of the North American West changed and developed over time? How do you present the North American West to your students and strive to reflect the broad horizons that encompass the histories of the region? What teaching strategies are most effective when teaching the American West? What primary sources work well in your lessons?  

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