Friday, June 20, 2014

"Rethinking the American Colonies" at Messiah College: Day Two

Yesterday I finished up my two-day teacher's seminar on the American colonies at Messiah College.  I hope the teachers enrolled in the course were able to take something away from the seminar.  This was a rather difficult seminar to teach because it was open to teachers at all grade levels.  We had an elementary school teacher, middle school teachers, and teachers who teach AP-level courses.  But the focus was on content, not pedagogy.  Not all of the teachers will be able to make a direct link between the content and their courses, but I hope that they at least learned something new.

On day two we focused on the settlement of Pennsylvania, the British Enlightenment in America, and the First Great Awakening. These are three of my favorite topics to teach.  The teachers in the class had some great questions.  One teacher was interested in the connections between the American Revolution.  Another teacher was curious about the way Penn's rather peaceful relations with the Indians deteriorated over the years, especially as it relates to the infamous "Walking Purchase" and the Conestoga Massacre.

I really enjoy these two-day seminars sponsored by the Messiah College Center for Public Humanities.  I hope I get the opportunity to do another one next summer.