Grades 8-10 Unit Overview: Founding of Schools and Asylums
The Unit Overview features a grid of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) strategies and tools employed, standards, and a list of the nearly 30 primary sources used in the unit with thumbnails for each. (Lists of primary sources in lesson plans include hyperlinks to sources as readable text. Lesson plans detail the UDL strategies and tools that they use.) The Unit Overview also lists all secondary sources and background materials for teachers used in the unit.
All the grades 8-10 units begin with a brief introduction to the topic. Lessons 1 & 2 could anchor study of the Second Great Awakening and other reforms of the period or integrate within a larger unit. Lesson 2 introduces some of the problems with larger scale institutionalization and thus could provide a foundation for further study of the exposés and struggles for independent living throughout the 20th century. Link to the Grades 8-10 Unit on Founding of Schools and Asylums Overview.
Grades 6-12 - Intro Lesson: Introduction to Disability History
Introductory lesson slides call students to use words about disability with respect. The slides also include a definition of disability and feature pictures from the Library of Congress that show tools for access. Students generate questions.
Grades 8-10 - Lesson 1: Disability and 19th Century Moral Reformers
Students explore the context and causes of the rapid growth of schools and asylums for people with disabilities in the first half of the 19th century. The lesson puts education reforms in the context of the Antebellum era of reform and evolving views on Federalism. Students analyze the 1843 report by Dorothea Dix to the Massachusetts Legislature on abuses of disabled inmates in poorhouses and prisons. Students consider the growth of schools for the Deaf, blind, and developmentally disabled. Lesson 1 slides begin with an investigation of a lithograph of the American School for the Deaf and the work of Laurent Clerc. Further slides describe the development of institutions in the early 19th century.
Grades 8-10 - Lesson 2: Perspectives on Schools and Asylums
Students continue the investigation, starting with President Pierce's 1854 veto of the Dix asylum bill. Students examine the critical words of former residents of institutions, Isaac Hunt (1851) and Roland Johnson (1994), and of journalist Nellie Bly (1887). Lesson 2 slides present key documents in excerpted form. Slides and lesson resources also support an optional project in which students research the history of the institutions in their state.
Link to a google doc of the grades 6-12 lesson: Introduction to Disability History.
Link to a google doc of lesson 1 for the grades 8-10 unit on schools and asylums.
Link to a google doc of lesson 2 for the grades 8-10 unit on schools and asylums.