My students need a supplemental United States history text that helps them understand how history is constructed, how perspective and identity influence how history is reported, and exposure to multiple perspectives can deconstruct the dominant narrative.
My scholars are hardworking, dedicated, and curious about the world around them - however, many feel that historical texts do not represent their identities and only perpetuate the dominant narrative.
Since starting, I've seen the impact DonorsChoose donors have made in our ability to provide high-quality programming to our students; my mission is to ensure all students have access to historical texts that represent multiple diverse perspectives.
Minnesota has one of the worst achievement gaps in the country, and we are a public charter school proving that all children are capable of success, regardless of zip code, race, or other factors. 95% of our students qualify for free or reduced-price lunch, and 99% of our students are students of color. 100% of our students are on the path to college.
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Most history textbooks are written from the point of view of power and rarely present a balanced account of historical events in United States history. These texts rarely acknowledge the bias inherent in their construction of the past. Writing history is a matter of what gets written down and what gets left out - who gets to tell the story and who is silenced.
My students come from historically underrepresented and marginalized communities who have been affected by power and the struggle for power, and rarely feel empowered from learning about history.
If funded, this project would put in the hands of my students a resource that gives voice to absent narratives in U.S. history and allows my students to see aspects of their identity and their impact on history.
This resource will help my students understand that there isn't just one version of history and that history is constructed by the people who were present and, often, in positions of power and privilege. By building critical literacy and thinking skills, I hope to empower my students to be curious and critical thinkers about what they learn and read - something that we could all use a healthy dose of moving into the future.
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