Teaching History and Current Events Issues

As an extension of Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies, the Choices Program offers teachers professional development, lesson plans, and strategies which combine content and 21st Century skills and strive to increase student engagement. One aspect of the Choice Program is “Teaching with the News,” an initiative which “provides online curriculum materials and ideas to connect the content of the classroom to the headlines in the news. Topics cover a range of foreign policy and international issues.” From violence in Mexico to Pakistan’s floods to analyzing political cartoons about the US in Afghanistan and beyond, this site offers some great lesson ideas and a variety of learning activities. The Choices Program also offers Scholars Online, a video series which showcases experts in their subject areas including Brazil’s development, Cuba’s past and future, the Untied nations, and more.

The Choices Program’s lesson plan and videos are intended for a high school-level audience.  Also on the site visitors will find Teaching tools including tips for role-playing, guidelines for deliberations in the classroom, and graphic organizers. Choices Program materials could be easily incorporated into US History, International Relations, Global Studies, Geography, Spanish, and US Government courses.

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