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Collection

Resources for Civic Education in Massachusetts

Explore resources that meet the Massachusetts History and Social Science Framework.

Published:

At a Glance

Collection

Language

English — US

Subject

  • Civics & Citizenship
  • History
  • Social Studies

Grade

6–12
  • Antisemitism
  • Culture & Identity
  • Democracy & Civic Engagement
  • Genocide
  • Global Migration & Immigration
  • Human & Civil Rights
  • Racism
  • The Holocaust

Overview

About This Collection

Facing History and Ourselves’ research-based approach to history and civics aligns with the Massachusetts Curriculum Framework’s guiding principles and content standards. 

Our student-centered teaching strategies, historical case studies, and current events resources are designed to help young people develop the essential civic qualities they need to participate in a democracy. 

This collection features the Facing History resources that meet Massachusetts History and Social Science standards.

This collection includes: 

  • Resources aligned with Massachusetts standards for Grade 8
  • Resources aligned with Massachusetts standards for US History
  • Resources aligned with Massachusetts standards for US History II
  • Resources aligned with Massachusetts standards for World History II

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Inside this Collection

Grade 8 Alignment

  1. Book: Choices in Little Rock + Writing Supplement
    Investigates the choices made by the Little Rock Nine and others in the community during efforts to desegregate Central High School in 1957.
  2. Unit: 10 Questions for Young Changemakers
    Provides students the opportunity to reflect on their own and other students' civic participation, while also offering strategies as they transfer the knowledge gained from their unit of study into tangible opportunities to take action.
  3. Unit: Eyes on the Prize: America's Civil Rights Movement
    Explores important lessons about the power of ordinary citizens to shape democracy. Includes 14-part series, study guide, and lessons.
  4. Unit: Facing Ferguson: News Literacy in a Digital Age
    Lessons feature video interviews with journalists and scholars and analysis of news coverage and social media. 
  5. Mini-Unit: Memphis 1968
    Examines the visions and strategies of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,  Malcolm X, and Stokely Carmichael and ask students how they can create a more just world.
  6. Guide: Teaching Farewell to Manzanar
    Supports the teaching of Jeanne Wakatsuki’s memoir about the forced relocation of Japanese Americans.
  7. Guide: Teaching Warriors Don't Cry
    Explores Melba Patillo Bates’s powerful memoir about the desegregation of Central High School.
  1. Book: Choices in Little Rock + Writing Supplement
    Investigates the choices made by the Little Rock Nine and others in the community during efforts to desegregate Central High School in 1957.
  2. Unit: Eyes on the Prize: America's Civil Rights Movement
    Explores important lessons about the power of ordinary citizens to shape democracy. Includes 14-part series, study guide, and lessons.
  3. Collection: The Reconstruction Era (selected primary sources)
    Examines  the pivotal era when a nation divided by slavery and war was challenged to rebuild.
  4. Video: Human Rights, Civil Rights, and the Cold War
    Dr. Carol Anderson discusses human rights discussions during World War II and links between the Cold War, the creation of the UDHR, and politics of race in the US.
  1. Mini-Lesson: Where Do We Get Our News, and Why Does it Matter?
    Invites students to assess their news consumption by encouraging them to consider their relationship to and perception of the news.
  2. Lesson: The Challenge of Confirmation Bias
    Defines confirmation bias and examines why people sometimes maintain their beliefs in the face of information that contradicts their understanding.
  3. Unit: Facing Ferguson: News Literacy in a Digital Age
    Lessons feature video interviews with journalists and scholars and analysis of news coverage and social media.

US History I Alignment

  1. Collection: The Reconstruction Era and the Fragility of Democracy and Writing Strategies Supplement
    Examines the pivotal era when a nation divided by slavery and war was challenged to rebuild.
  2. Video: The Origins of Lynching Culture in the US
    Dr. Paula Giddings from Smith College discusses the history and origins of lynching.
  3. Video: Understanding Jim Crow
    Dr. David Cunningham from Brandeis University explores systems of racial separation and institutionalized segregation known as Jim Crow.
  1. Guide: Becoming American: The Chinese Experience
    Explores themes of identity and belonging in the context of the ways the first arrivals from China in the 1840s, their descendants, and recent immigrants have “become American.”
  2. Lesson: Lesson 9: "Equality for All?" from The Reconstruction Era
    Examines the limits to the transformation of American democracy during the Radical Reconstruction era.
  3. Mini-Lesson: The Legacies of Chinese Exclusion
    Explores why the anti-immigration law of 1882 matters today and how Chinese exclusion has shaped enduring attitudes about difference, citizenship, and American identity.
  1. Chapter: Holocaust and Human Behavior, Chapter 3
    Focuses on how WWI shaped and was shaped by ideas of “we” and “they,” and highlights aspects of the war that influenced the history of Nazi Germany.

US History II Alignment

  1. Mini-Lesson: The Legacies of Chinese Exclusion
    Explores why the anti-immigration law of 1882 matters today and how Chinese exclusion shaped enduring attitudes about difference, citizenship, and American identity.
  2. Book: Race and Membership in American History: The Eugenics Movement
    Focuses on how people used eugenics to justify their prejudices and advocate for programs aimed at solving problems by ridding society of “inferior racial traits.”
  3. Guide: Teaching Mockingbird
    Includes first-hand accounts of African American men and women.
  4. Video: The Origins of Lynching Culture in the US
    Dr. Paula Giddings from Smith College discusses the history and origins of lynching.
  5. Video: Understanding Jim Crow
    Dr. David Cunningham from Brandeis University explores systems of racial separation and institutionalized segregation known as Jim Crow.
  1. Video: Americans and the Holocaust
    Explores the motives, pressures and fears that shaped Americans’ responses to Nazism and the humanitarian refugee crisis it provoked.
  2. Mini-Lesson: Bearing Witness to Japanese American Incarceration
    Probes some of the complex issues arising from the history of Japanese incarceration during World War II.
  3. Collection: The Nanjing Atrocities: Crimes of War
    Examines the war crimes perpetrated by Japanese troops in the Chinese city of Nanjing during World War II.
  4. Guide: Teaching Farewell to Manzanar
    Supports the teaching of Jeanne Wakatsuki’s memoir about the forced relocation of Japanese Americans.
  1. Guide: Civil Rights Historical Investigations
    Traces the development of the US civil rights movement from the 1950s to the 1970s through three of the movement's major events.
  2. Unit: Eyes on the Prize: America's Civil Rights Movement 1954-1985
    Explores important lessons about the power of ordinary citizens to shape democracy. Includes 14-part series, study guide, and lessons.
  3. Guide: Democracy in Action: Freedom Riders
    Documents the experience of the Freedom Riders, who worked to dismantle the structures of discrimination through nonviolence.
  4. Mini-Unit: Memphis 1968
    Examines the visions and strategies of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Malcolm X, and Stokely Carmichael and ask students how they can create a more just world.

World History II Alignment

  1. Book: Crimes Against Humanity and Civilization: The Genocide of the Armenians
    Focuses on the Armenian Genocide during World War I and its many legacies, including Turkish denial.
  2. Collection: The Nanjing Atrocities
    Examines the war crimes perpetrated by Japanese troops in the Chinese city of Nanjing during World War II.
  3. Unit: Teaching Holocaust and Human Behavior
    Leads students through an examination of the catastrophic period when Nazi Germany murdered six million Jews and millions of other civilians, in the midst of WWII.
  4. Unit: Universal Declaration of Human Rights
    Examines the context in which the UDHR was drafted, including the debates and dilemmas faced by Eleanor Roosevelt and others, and considers its legacies and lasting impact.
  1. Collection: Confronting Apartheid
    Confronting Apartheid examines the complicated history and lasting legacy of apartheid in South Africa.
  2. Book: Teaching Red Scarf Girl
    Explores themes of conformity, obedience, and prejudice through Ji-li Jiang’s memoir set during the Cultural Revolution in China.
  1. Video: Everyone Has a Story
    Arn Chorn-Pond tells his story as a refugee from the Cambodian Genocide.
  2. Lesson: The Roots and Impact of Antisemitism
    Looks at how anti-Judaism developed into antisemitism in the 19th century and considers the present-day implications of longstanding patterns of discrimination and violence against Jews.
  3. Mini-Lesson: Responding to the Rohingya Crisis
    Places this ongoing crisis in historical context, with footage from a refugee camp and survivor testimony.

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Facing History and Ourselves is designed for educators who want to help students explore identity, think critically, grow emotionally, act ethically, and participate in civic life. It’s hard work, so we’ve developed some go-to professional learning opportunities to help you along the way.

Using the strategies from Facing History is almost like an awakening.
— Claudia Bautista, Santa Monica, Calif