This free, virtual educator workshop will provide attendees an opportunity to connect and learn about deliberative tools that can be used to teach about injustices of the past and the ways in which the past is connected to the realities of the present. Educators will receive 4.5 clock hours of professional learning for attending all sessions.
What is Deliberative Learning?
Social studies teachers have the difficult yet important challenge of teaching about injustices of the past and the ways in which the past is connected to the realities of the present. Teachers are often hesitant to facilitate difficult conversations, since administrators, parents, and some community members prefer those conversations take place elsewhere. Classroom deliberations on difficult historic issues related to injustice are an effective way to teach national social studies standards and develop students as civic actors.
Put simply, deliberation is the process through which people can come to common ground, and potentially a decision, by considering many approaches to a current issue or historic event. Deliberation asks students to not only consider the benefits of each approach, but also the potential negative consequences, and the cost to the community, whether in time, money, or goodwill. The deliberative process also urges students to answer “who is not at the table?” and the impact of their decision on the lives of others.
By drawing a diversity of viewpoints into the decision-making process, deliberation can lead to more thoughtful, sustainable decision-making. Historical deliberations ask students to put themselves in the shoes of citizens who have had to make a difficult decision in history, weigh the choices that were on the table, and consider what choices they might have made.
Cristin Brawner, David Mathews Center for Civic Life
Cristin Brawner is the Executive Director of the David Mathews Center for Civic Life in Montevallo, Alabama. Cristin coordinates Mathews Center signature programming aimed at increasing active citizenship, community collaboration, and effective decision-making across Alabama. Read more.
Eden Cho, Smithsonian National Museum of American History
Eden Cho is an Education Technologist on the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History’s PK-12 team. She supports the digital platforms and outreach of educational resources, though her favorite aspect of the work is collaborating directly with teachers and students. Read more.
Gabrielle Lamplugh, David Mathews Center for Civic Life
Gabrielle Lamplugh serves as Education Director at the David Mathews Center for Civic Life, in Montevallo, Alabama. In her role, she develops programming and professional development focused on creating place-based and deliberative learning opportunities in classrooms and communities. Read more.
Nicole Moore, National Center for Civil and Human Rights
Nicole leads all educational initiatives at The Center, including K-12, university and lifelong learning. A public historian with more than 10 years of museum experience, her primary focus has been around the interpretation of enslavement at historic sites and museums. Read more.
Abby Pfisterer, Smithsonian National Museum of American History
Abby Pfisterer is an Education Specialist at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History. She leads the development of resources and programs that use history to foster civic learning and engagement among K-12 students nationwide. She has over ten years of experience working in formal classroom and informal learning settings at museums and historic sites. Read more.
Clare Shubert, Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation
Clare Shubert joined the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation in January of 2016 as the Director of Engagement and Programming, specializing in K-12 educational programs. In this role, she develops and implements unique educational experiences for visiting students designed to teach lessons of character, leadership, and civic action through the examples and stories of President and Mrs. Ford. Read more.
Dr. Mark Wilson, Draughon Center for the Arts & Humanities at Auburn University
Dr. Mark Wilson is Director of Community Engagement and the Caroline Marshall Draughon Center for the Arts & Humanities at Auburn University. He serves as an Appalachian Teaching Fellow with the Appalachian Regional Commission and teaches practicum courses that provide living-learning experiences for students in rural Alabama. Read more.
Creek War Historic Issue Guide
This issue guide immerses students in the decision-making process that Alabama’s Creek Indian tribe faced leading up to the Creek War of 1813 – 1814. The guide, designed for students as young as fourth grade, asks participants to consider the many challenges that faced the Creek Nation during this era, as well as the diversity of concerns within the Creek community regarding the conflict. Read more.
Place-Based, Deliberative Learning in the Classroom
This handbook offers educators a quick introduction on how to implement deliberation to enrich students’ understanding of their community’s history and their investment in their community’s future. The handbook also overviews the resources for deliberative, civic, and place-based education that are available free of charge to educators nationwide.
Historic Decisions Create Citizens of Tomorrow
This workshop draws on research done by the presenters in collaboration with the Charles F. Kettering Foundation. Kettering is a nonprofit operating foundation rooted in the American tradition of cooperative research. Learn more about Deliberation with this informative Kettering Foundation video.