Tag Archives: United States History

Everyday Edit: Hawaii, the 50th State

Moving right along this morning, here is an Everyday Edit worksheet on Hawaii, America’s 50th State.

And as always, to give credit where it is so abundantly due, you should know that the good people at Education World generously offer at no cost to you a yearlong supply of these documents. I’ve used them for many years in my classrooms, and they are first rate.

And if you find typos in this document, for heaven’s sake fix them! That’s the whole point here….

Cultural Literacy: Internment of Japanese Americans

Here is a Cultural Literacy worksheet on Internment of Japanese Americans in the United States during World War II. I don’t want to belabor the point, but this is not one of the proudest moments in this nation’s history. But come to think of it a bit, especially given the recent spate of racist attacks against Americans of Asian Pacific descent, it might not be a bad idea to teach this as a cautionary tale about nationalist bigotry.

In any case, this worksheet is long enough that you could–especially if you teach social studies–use it as independent practice, i.e. homework.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Black Elk

Black Elk: In a work entitled Black Elk Speaks: Being the Life Story of a Holy Man of the Oglala Sioux (1932; repr 1988), Black Elk (1863-1950) recounted his life to John G. Neihardt (1881-1973), conveying important insights into Native American culture, religion, and life on the Plains, as well as a firsthand account of the destruction of that way of life. Black Elk witnessed both Custer’s defeat at Little Big Horn and the Wounded Knee Massacre of 1890, in which the U.S. Army killed over a hundred men, women, and children. The massacre marked the end of the Indian Wars.

Excerpted from: Murphy, Bruce, ed. Benet’s Reader’s Encyclopedia, Fourth Edition. New York: Harper Collins, 1996.

Term of Art: White-Collar Crime

“White-Collar Crime: A term introduced by Edwin Sutherland in the 1940s in order to draw attention to the illegalities and misdeeds of ‘captains of industry’ and other middle-class members of the business world (see his ‘White-Collar Criminality,’ American Sociological Review, 1940, or White-Collar Crime, 1949). The great value of the idea was to redress the imbalance in criminology’s obsession with crimes of the working class. The concept tends to be used very broadly, to include both activities carried out by employees against their employer (embezzlement, pilfering), and activities undertaken by corporate executives on behalf of the corporation itself (such as violation of anti-trust regulations or stock-market rules). Strictly speaking the latter should more accurately be designated corporate crime.”

Excerpted from: Marshall, Gordon, ed. Oxford Dictionary of Sociology. New York: Oxford University Press, 1994.

Samuel Adams

Lest students think he is only a brand of beer and not a hotheaded patriot from Boston in the cause of the American Revolution, here is a reading on Samuel Adams and its accompanying vocabulary-building and comprehension worksheet.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Cultural Literacy: “A House Divided”

Here’s a Cultural Literacy worksheet on Lincoln’s “House Divided” speech. I’ll proceed to my next post on the assumption I don’t need to belabor this high point in American rhetoric.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Bill of Rights

After a badly needed day away from this computer screen, I’m back with, for starters, this reading on the Bill of Rights and its attendant vocabulary-building and comprehension worksheet. The Bill of Rights is, of course, the name we citizens of the United States we give to the aggregated first ten amendments to our Constitution. They are, both hermeneutically and politically, some of the most hotly contested language in our founding documents.

Therefore, conceptually, there is a lot to unpack here if you want to dilate on this material: continuity and change, citizens and the law, historical perspective (particularly the Third Amendment, on quartering troops), the spirit and letter of the law, the Supreme Court’s function in our republic–you get the picture.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.