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James W. Loewen (1942-2021)

We mourn the loss of our friend and colleague and remain committed to the work he began.

Resources for Teaching History Creatively

Here is a typical table from the US. Census for Indiana. Students may need a little help understanding it, but they can learn a lot from so doing. Help them find the overall population of “Negroes” in Indiana, compared to “Others.” What seems to be happening? Where are the African Americans? Compare, say, 1890, or 2020. Lots to think about, with the help of the book Sundown Towns and other parts of this website. And that’s just one table!

general characteristics for places of 1,000 to 2,500; 1970
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Samples from Lies My Teacher Told Me

He has several topics and can work with you for what you need.

Resources for Teaching with Lies My Teachers Told Me

16 Very Short Articles on How to Teach History, for K-12 Teachers

The NEA (National Education Association) asked me to write a series of short articles for their members on how to teach difficult historical topics tied to race relations. These topics can be tough to teach because textbooks do a poor job with them, because they are sensitive issues, because current controversies (such as about Confederate monuments) mean parental emotions can run high, and for other reasons. However, glossing over these issues sends exactly the wrong message: that these topics are not important, just the opposite of the truth. I hope these essays will be useful to you.

Some of the essays are posted, in slightly different form, at the NEA’s website.

Introducing the Series
Essay 2: How to Teach Slavery

Essay 3: How to Teach Secession

Essay 4: Teaching about the Confederacy and Race Relations

Essay 5: Confederate Public History

Essay 6: Reconstruction

Essay 7: Getting History Right Can Decrease Racism Toward Mexican Americans

Essay 8: Problematic Words about Native Americans
Essay 9: How and When Did the First People Get Here?
Essay 10: The Pantheon of Explorers
Essay 11: Columbus Day
Essay 12: How Thanksgiving Helps Keep Us Ethnocentric
Essay 13: American Indians as Mascots
Essay 14: How to Teach the Nadir of Race Relations
Essay 15: Teaching the Civil Rights Movement
Essay 16: Getting Students Thinking about the Future

Teaching the "Great Explorers"

In K-12, students learn the pantheon of “Great Explorers”: Prince Henry the Navigator, Bartolomeu Dias, Christopher Columbus, Vasco da Gama, Ferdinand Magellan, etc. Soon most forget which explorer did what (except Columbus, who “discovered America”), but they do think of them as Great White Men, our forebears. Always, the question to be asked is, what did they do when they got there?

Visual U.S. History for Your Use in Teaching

Here Loewen has combined various visuals he used in his talks and workshops, for your classroom use. Many are in the public domain. Some I took, and I hereby make them available, rights free, though it would be nice if you credit “James W. Loewen” in any published or e-published use. They are grouped in a roughly chronological manner under several headings.