The three-week institute Thomas Jefferson: Personality, Character and Public Life, offered by the National Endowment for the Humanities, will take place at Boston University from July 8 to 26, 2013. Speakers include R. B. Bernstein, Peter Hatch, Joanne Freeman, Jan Lewis, and Peter Onuf. The institute will seek to deepen our understanding of one of the most important figures in American history, a figure who is fascinating, influential, inspiring, and embattled.
Focusing on Jefferson’s personality and character and connecting them to his public career will be the theme of the first week, followed by an examination of his views on religion, his role as a family man, and his correspondence with John Adams. In the final week, the Institute turns to slavery, science, and money.
The application and further information (like the stipend for teachers is $2,700; itinerary and speaker bios) is at the institute’s website.
During the three weeks, participants will also ponder some larger questions:
- Is the intimate life knowable?
- Does it connect to the public man or woman?
- Do we each fashion our own version of Jefferson to reflect our values and needs?
- What is Jefferson’s legacy?
Discussion will include pedagogical questions:
- What role should biography and primary sources play in history instruction?
- How does teaching biographies fit with state standards and high stakes testing?
- How do we teach intimate information about famous Americans to young people?
- How can teachers be honest and realistic yet still inspire students and encourage citizenship?
Learn more by visiting thomasjeffersonpersonalitycharacterandpubliclife.org.
We encourage you to take advantage of this complimentary program from Colonial Williamsburg‘s Electronic Field Trip series. Colonial Williamsburg announces its “Gift to the Nation” – this will be complimentary online access to their first Electronic Field Trip of the 2012-2013 season, “The Will of the People.” (The target grade level audience is 4-8th).
This Electronic Field Trip examines the presidential election of 1800, one of the most bitter in U.S. history, and provides a surprising lesson for a 21st-century student. Thomas Jefferson explains how negative campaigning, partisan politics, and contested elections have been a part of our political system since the earliest days of the republic.
This program will give teachers, home schoolers, and the general viewing audience a look at all the online resources that comprise each Electronic Field Trip. These resources include: a complete teacher guide, teacher road map, bibliography, literacy materials, program script, an email link to Thomas Jefferson, and streaming video versions of the pre-recorded program segments.
Registrants will have full access to this online resource from September 1-30, 2012. The Gift to the Nation – The Will of the People Electronic Field Trip is delivered 100% online. The actual broadcast of this Electronic Field Trip will happen on October 13, 2012.
There are many options for teachers interested in doing a videoconference on on American Presidents, (especially the Founding Fathers). Here are some programs available for K-12 teachers (all can be found on www.cilc.org):
Another option is webconferencing, which is an interactive connection hosted over the internet, using the classroom computer instead of videoconference equipment. The Education Department of The Hermitage, Andrew Jackson’s home, offers webconferencing on President Jackson and Jacksonian America.