American History in International Context
American History in International Context is a professional development project for history teachers in seven underserved Virginia school systems within the Bedford Consortium in the mountains of western Virginia. Four districts in the consortium have not met their Adequate Yearly Progress goals, and five of the consortium's 49 schools have been designated as being in need of improvement. Each year, teachers in the program will participate in a 5-day summer institute that incorporate lectures, topical sessions specific to various grade levels, and lesson plan development; a program of structured readings; two day-long workshops; an individual project such as a scholarly paper or book review; at least four school-level discussion groups; and a visit to a key historic site. Teachers will also receive individual attention from an instructional coach and be eligible to receive stipends and six credits toward a master's degree. A single cohort of 25 teachers will participate in all three years of the program. The unifying theme of American History in International Context is the interplay of domestic and international factors in traditional American history, with attention to how those factors led to the founding of our nation and its emergence as a world leader. Participating teachers will learn how historic documents, artifacts, and narratives can be used to interest students and how to integrate technology in history instruction. In addition, they will learn methods to enhance student literacy, analytical skills, and interpretive skills. The program will create an enduring community of teacher historians within the region and will promote teachers' continued independent study and scholarship.