Encouraging Understanding and Empathy through History

Exploring history from multiple perspectives helps students connect with the past, and helps them understand current issues. It also encourages students to consider multiple sources when considering any event, and to empathize with different perspectives in their own world, helping to create a kinder, more inclusive community.

Most recently, middle school students studied the western expansion in the U.S. during the first half of the 19th century. They considered this important period in our country’s history from the perspective of the pioneers who sought land, religious freedom, or gold; and that of the American Indians whose lives were impacted by the Indian Removal Act and how white settlers made it increasingly difficult to find food.

Earlier this year, 4-8 grade students also expanded their knowledge of the American Civil War and Underground Railroad. Middle school students read the story of Sadako Sasaki, a student whose life was cut short by leukemia, an aftereffect of the atom bomb that fell on her hometown of Hiroshima.

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