Foreign Affairs & U.S. History Materials, Curated for High School Teachers by a Teacher

Aug 22, 2016

Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs works with some of the world's leading statesmen, experts, and scholars on topics relating to ethics and international affairs, creating free online resources for a global audience.

In 2015, the Council appointed Elena Shanbaum as education fellow to launch a new online education section on its website, designed for educators at both high school and college levels. This summer, Shanbaum returned to expand this popular section.

In addition to adding resources to existing sections, Shanbaum has created a new Worksheet and Excerpt Section. This is especially designed to fit the needs of busy high school teachers with academically rigorous classrooms. It features short pieces of text—ranging from a paragraph to a few pages—chosen based on reading comprehension level and their usefulness for comparative government, world history, and U.S. history courses.

The Comparative Government section includes materials on China, Iran, Mexico, Nigeria, Russia, and the UK, plus a section on key terms. The U.S. history section includes materials on Martin Luther King, Andrew Carnegie, and U.S. suppression of dissent during World War I.

"I created this section after working at Carnegie Council for a number of years before becoming a high school history and government teacher," said Shanbaum. "Much of what I was doing as a teacher was taking excerpts from reputable sources, adding thought-provoking questions, and formatting it into a worksheet. I quickly realized that excerpts from Council materials would do well in various classrooms. Included in many of the worksheets are suggested discussion questions, and most importantly, they are in .doc form so that teachers can easily modify the materials to fit their classroom needs."

The section is designed to be as accessible and easy to use as possible. Although it tackles complex issues, it uses language that students can understand, and provides time-strapped teachers with the following: valuable, high-quality content without having to read through a long document; easy-to-modify text; and excerpts that are manageable in a class period or for homework.

Elena Shanbaum teaches at Bronx High School of Science in New York City. She has an MA in Teaching of Social Studies from Teachers College, Columbia University and an MA in Global Communication from the Elliott School of International Affairs at The George Washington University.

ABOUT CARNEGIE COUNCIL Founded by Andrew Carnegie in 1914 and based in New York City, Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs is an educational, nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that produces lectures, publications, and multimedia materials on the ethical challenges of living in a globalized world.

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