World History Teachers Institute Attracts Teachers from Afar

Posted: June 23, 2003 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Tara Laskowski

World history high school teachers from as far away as Bolivia will gather at George Mason this week to sharpen their skills and share knowledge about the latest advancements in teaching during the Advanced Placement (AP) World History Institute. From June 23-27, the institute will provide secondary school teachers with an overview of the content and skills necessary for teaching AP World History.

George Mason Provost Peter Stearns and professors Sumaiya Hamdani, Lawrence Butler, Matt Karush, Yevette Richards Jordan, and Jody Allen will make presentations throughout the week on topics ranging from colonialism to modern wars. Each of the five days also includes a question-and-answer session and discussions of curriculum implications led by College Board-endorsed teacher consultant Allison Kopkau. The program helps prepare for teaching the AP world history course by providing strategies on integrating world history scholarship, assessments, resource materials, and good teaching methods into the classroom.

“One of the goals is to make world history courses more interesting and exciting for students,” says Phyllis Slade-Martin, director of the Summer Institute. “The George Mason Institute stands out among other programs like it because of the active involvement by faculty members that specialize in certain content areas.”

In addition to teachers from surrounding school districts such as Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince George’s, Stafford, and Montgomery Counties, as well as the Washington, D.C., school district, this year’s institute includes teachers from California, Nevada, and other parts of the world. Esther Artieda, a teacher at the American Cooperative School, American Embassy in La Paz, Bolivia, will also attend. Artieda, like many of the teachers coming from places outside of the D.C. area, expressed an interest in meeting with and learning from Stearns, chair of the World History AP Committee. Artieda uses Sterns’s textbooks on world history in her classroom.

“We have a strong relationship with teachers from the regional school districts, but it speaks highly of the program that we also attract folks from other parts of the country and world,” says Slade-Martin.

This is the third year that the institute has been hosted by George Mason. It is sponsored by the Center of World History.

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