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Zinn Education Project News
The Real Irish American Story Not Taught in Schools
This month we revisit the very popular article about how textbooks fail to look at the social forces that starved and uprooted over a million Irish----and that are starving and uprooting people today.

By Bill Bigelow

Throughout the Irish potato famine there was an abundance of food produced in Ireland, yet the landlords exported it to markets abroad.

During the first winter of famine, as perhaps 400,000 Irish peasants starved, landlords exported 17 million pounds sterling worth of grain, cattle, pigs, flour, eggs, and poultry----food that could have prevented those deaths.

The school curriculum could and should ask students to reflect on the contradiction of starvation amidst plenty, on the ethics of food exports amidst famine. And it should ask why these patterns persist into our own time. Continue reading.

Send Us Your Classroom Stories
Have you used the "Hunger on Trial" Teaching Activity? 
We are collecting stories from the classroom. Please describe the impact in the classroom. Include student comments and responses, if available, and email to [email protected]
New from Rethinking Schools
Rethinking Sexism, Gender, and Sexuality
Edited by Annika Butler-Wall, Kim Cosier, Rachel Harper, Jeff Sapp, Jody Sokolower, and Melissa Bollow Tempel 
Rethinking Sexism, Gender, and Sexuality is a collection of inspiring stories about how to integrate feminist and LGBTQ content into curriculum, make it part of a vision for social justice, and create classrooms and schools that nurture all children and their families. Includes insightful, inspiring articles about:
  • Our Classrooms
  • Our Curriculum
  • When Teachers Come Out
  • Beyond the Classroom
  • Teacher Education, Continuing Education
Learn more at Rethinking Schools.
Teaching Outside the Textbook
Lessons frequently used by teachers who
responded to our book contest  
  U.S. Mexico War:
"We Take Nothing by Conquest,
Thank God"
"It is a great activity to set the tone for the students to think beyond our regular textbooks and opens their eyes to multiple perspectives, not only for the U.S-Mexican War and 'Manifest Destiny,' but for all of our units of study during the year." ----Charlie Carr, middle school social studies teacher, Plymouth, Minnesota
Dirty Oil and Shovel-Ready Jobs:
A Role Play on Tar Sands and the Keystone XL Pipeline
"I heard students explain, 'This pipeline is going down!' 'I wonder what else we are going to learn about Canada.' 'How is this going to impact Kansas City?' In that moment, I knew this was where I needed to be." ----Christina Hendrix, middle school social studies teacher, Kansas City, Missouri
Download lessonDownload lesson

Stepping into Selma: Voting Rights History and the Legacy Today
"The role play activity was a huge success. Students talked about how learning about people who were active in the Civil Rights Movement helped them understand the film Selma better." ----Sharla Crawford, high school social studies teacher, Montana
'If There Is No Struggle':
Teaching a People's History of the Abolition Movement
"The mock meeting itself brought a much higher level of thinking for my students and they all had the realization of the complexity of ending slavery." ----Nicole Stonestreet, high school social studies teacher, Midlothian, Virginia
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Give Every Teacher the Resources to Teach Outside the Textbook
As you know, access to our website and classroom lessons are free, and we include no advertising. And that's why we're asking you to consider becoming a monthly supporter----to help build the community of teachers teaching outside the textbook. 
Zinn Education Project
The goal of the Zinn Education Project is to introduce students to a more accurate, complex, and engaging understanding of United States history.
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