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History eNews from Emerging America - October 7, 2020

Published on Wed, 10/07/2020

Emerging America logo against vista of sky, river, distant mountains.

EMERGING AMERICA HISTORY eNEWS Vol. 7, Issue 27 for October 7, 2020


  • RECOMMENDED: Northeast Regional Conference for the Social Studies (NERC) 2020 will be online! - sessions continue through November 18 - An impressive Program! - Free. Easy to participate. Info & Register

    • Oct. 19 - 3-5pm - History's Mysteries: K-5 Social Studies Curriculum - Kelley Brown & Laurie Risler. - Info

    • Oct. 21 - 3-5pm - Making History, Civics, and Social Science Accessible to ALL Learners - Emerging America - Info.

  • DESE 2020-2021 Support Networks for History & Social Science:

  • Our Rights and Nothing Less: Struggles to Secure the Vote in the United States - Oct. 24 - 8:30-2:15 ET - FREE - Joint workshop for teachers by Primary Source, the Massachusetts Historical Society, and Emerging America. Info & Register

  • Long Road to Justice -seeks teacher advisors for a film project by the Ruffin Society. The African American Experience in the MA Courts seeks to inspire youth to become changemakers. From Mum Bett to Deval Patrick and Black Lives Matter. Contact Susan Goodman

  • Civics Education is top solution Americans want for what ails our democracy say 56% of Democrats AND Republicans; 59% say teachers are most trusted source on civic education. CivXNow national survey for iCivics. 

  • Next issue of the History eNews is October 21. Submit events & resources to by October 18. 


The Fight for Disability Rights 

Picture books paired with primary sources make vital history newly accessible in the elementary grades. 

(See new blog post teaser below.) 

Register by Oct. 13 for grad course: From Reform to Equal Rights: Teach Disability History in the K-12 Classroom - Information and Registration

Small girl pulls herself up capital steps, sweat band around head, as older girl on her right also climbs.
ed by 8-year-old Jennifer Keelan, left, crawl up the steps of the Capitol in Washington, D.C., March 12, 1990, to draw support for a key bill now pending in the House that would extend civil rights..."  


book cover illustration with bright drawing of girl climbing steps
Cover Illustration: All the Way to the Top by Annette Bay Pimental and Nabi H. Ali.


EVENTS @ EMERGING AMERICA - Info & Registration.




PDPs / OR optional grad credit available from Westfield State University.  

  • Accessing Inquiry for English Learners through Primary Sources

    • Successful course taught across the U.S. Meets 15 hour Mass license requirement for PD on teaching ELs. PDPs or 1 grad credit. Led by Rich Cairn and Alison Noyes, Emerging America. Details

      • October 19 to December 5. Register by October 13.
  • From Reform to Equal Rights: Teaching Disability History in the K-12 Classroom

    • PDPs or 1 grad credit. Led by Rich Cairn, Emerging America and scholar, Graham Warder. Details. This exciting new course will trace the emergence of Disability Rights over two centuries, addressing multiple new content standards in Massachusetts and other states. 

      • October 27 to December 7. Register by October 20.

Contact Rich Cairn about scheduling Accessing Inquiry and other professional development workshops remotely in your school district or region for 2020-2021. 



Library of Congress News


TPS Teachers Network - Teachers with interest in working with primary sources are welcome to join this network. Featured this week - YOU MUST LOGIN FIRST FOR THESE LINKS TO WORK:


Library of Congress Teacher Blog

  • A New Set of (3) Interactives on Congress and Civic Participation

  • New Virtual Student Workshops for Students in Grades 3-8

  • Encouraging Student Exploration of Historic Newspapers with an Article Celebrating North Carolina's Ratification of the U.S. Constitution

  • Exploring Identity with Citizen DJ, a New Project from LC Labs



  • (Upcoming events are Online unless otherwise noted)

Mikva Challenge - National Voter Events for Youth:

  • Oct. 8, 6:30-8:30pm Eastern Time - National Youth Voter Education & Ballot Party - Mikva Challenge - Youth get tools and strategies to educate and mobilize their communities to vote. Info & RSVP

  • Oct. 15, 6:30-8:30pm Eastern Time - Virtual Phone Bank - Mikva Challenge - Youth will be trained to effectively phone bank.  Info & RSVP. 

  • Oct. 22, 8:00pm Eastern Time - Youth: Debate Watch Party - Mikva Challenge - Youth join a community of young people from coast to coast to watch and debrief final Presidential debate. Info & RSVP


  • Oct. 7, 3pm Central Time - Inquiry Journeys Demo & Curriculum Overview - inquirED's elementary social studies curriculum. Info & Register

  • Oct. 7-9 - Revere in Perspective - A Virtual Symposium - American Antiquarian Society. Info & Register

  • Oct. 8, 7-8pm Eastern Time - Afro-Asian Ties: Sino-Black Relations, Dr. Keisha Brown, Middle Tennessee State University. Five College Center for East Asian Studies. (FCCEAS). Register.

  • Oct. 12 - Nov. 8 - Course: Separating Difference from Disability. Distinguish between a language difference and a learning disability. TESOL. Fees apply. Info

  • Oct. 14, 7-8pm Eastern Time - Nagasaki: Life after Nuclear War, A Conversation with author Susan Southard. FCCEAS. Register.

  • Oct. 14, 3pm Central Time - Culturally Responsive Teaching in Social Studies. How does inquiry set the stage for culturally responsive teaching?  inquireED. Info & Registration.

  • Oct. 23-25 - Teaching Slavery in Washington's World Symposium - free - Mt Vernon. Info

  • Nov. 4, 7-8pm Eastern Time - Implementing Peace, Sarah Campbell, Ketchikan High School. What does it mean to be a "peace teacher" in this moment? Why is peace education so important moving forward? FCCEAS. Register.

  • Nov. 11, 3pm Central Time - Social Studies Projects: Virtual or in Class - Give Students the Keys to Success. Info & Registration




People familiar with the work of Emerging America know that our Accessing Inquiry project and clearinghouse offers one of the best archives of accessible lesson plans on Disability History. We are delighted that Missouri school librarian Tom Bober (Twitter handle @CaptainLibrary) recently featured picture books on Disability History topics in his "Picture Books and Primary Sources" KnowledgeQuest column. 

In Picture Books and Primary Sources: All the Way to the Top by Annette Bay Pimentel and Nabi H. Ali, Bober features the story of How One Girl's Fight for Americans with Disabilities Changed Everything. The book relates how 8-year old Jennifer Keelan-Chaffins, a young civil rights activist, garnered national press attention for the 1990 "Capitol Crawl" protest and for passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act. 

Leadership, fairness, and civic understanding are foundational topics in the elementary grades. Bober's column highlights primary source video interviews of the activist herself that are particularly accessible to young students.   Read the rest by clicking New Primary Source Sets and Picture Books Feature Disability History.

- Alison Noyes History eNews welcomes YOUR news & events. 

Published Wednesdays; deadline Sunday noon. Archived at

Register for CES events.

Teacher-created lessons, primary source sets, & assessments at:

Follow Emerging America on Twitter and Facebook.  

Content created and featured in partnership with the TPS program does not indicate an endorsement by the Library of Congress.


Rich Cairn

Civics and Social Studies Curriculum and Instruction Specialist, Collaborative for Educational Services
Rich Cairn founded Emerging America in 2006, which features the Library of Congress Teaching with Primary Sources program at the Collaborative for Educational Services, and the National Endowment for the Humanities Landmarks of American History program, "Forge of Innovation: The Springfield Armory and the Genesis of American Industry." The Accessing Inquiry clearinghouse, supported by the Library of Congress TPS program promotes full inclusion of students with disabilities and English Learners in civics and social studies education.