Black Confederates in a 7th Grade Classroom?

Yesterday I had a wonderful phone conversation with a 7th grade history teacher from Boston.  The subject of black soldiers in the Confederate army came up in his class as part of a discussion of USCTs.  The teacher promised the class that he would look for information, which led him to my recent NYTs editorial.  From there he decided to contact me directly.  I offered him what I consider to be the accepted scholarly consensus and then we discussed various resources that could be used in class.  The first thing I suggested was the UVA case study of the doctored image of the Louisiana Native Guard.  From there I directed him to my Black Confederate Resources page and my recent screencast reviews of two websites.

So, it looks like a class of 7th graders will be introduced to issues of media literacy via my two screencasts, the ease with which images can be distorted, and a short video by Bruce Levine from the BC Resources page.  Yes, I am tooting my own horn, but I couldn’t be more pleased that the hard work that I put into this site is finding its way into history classrooms around the country.

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2 comments… add one
  • Edwin Thompson Feb 10, 2011 @ 10:43

    That is great feedback, especially from another teacher. Congratulations.

  • Margaret D. Blough Feb 10, 2011 @ 9:54

    I think it will have far broader impact than just the Civil War if it plays any kind of role in teaching kids to think critically about what they read, especially when they are researching something. It may be a very small thing that gets this started. My late maternal grandfather came to the US from Scotland as an adult. He used to complain that his childhood history texts, which, of course, had to be approved by London, took the approach to UK history of “British defeats and English victories.” My mother, his daughter, made a point of teaching us that, while Macbeth is a magnificent play, it is also a gross misrepresentation of Scottish history with Shakespeare trying to gain the favor of James VI and I. It led me to be fascinated by how history is written, portrayed and shaped.

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