By Qiong Yang
Educational organization Facing History and Ourselves (Facing History) hosted a seminar on July 8 at the Asian Community Development Corporation (ACDC), as part of a five-day training session for teachers. The seminar, “Immigration in a Changing World: Identity, Citizenship and Belonging,” was facilitated by Denny Conklin, Brian Fong and Laura Tavares of Facing History. The Chinese Historical Society of New England (CHSNE) presented and conducted tours of Boston’s Chinatown in the afternoon.
A group of 45 secondary school teachers, mostly from the Boston Public School district, participated in the seminar and the tour. The teachers watched documentary “Becoming American” first, which was followed by a discussion about Chinese immigrants and ended with walking tours of Chinatown led by CHSNE volunteers.
Both the teachers trained and staff from Facing History felt the event was a success.
“It expands our understanding of immigration,” said Emily McCauley, an American history teacher at Fay School. “I teach international students at school, like Korean and Chinese, so this seminar really broads my perspective of immigrants.”
“It has a deep impact on the teachers in terms of the engagement of teaching ability and being a good citizen,” Tavares said.
Facing History was founded in 1976 by educators who wanted to develop an effective and rewarding way to engage students. It is an organization that works to instill intellectual vigor and curiosity in the world’s secondary school students, by providing ideas and tools that support the needs of teachers. It aims to grow from a single innovative course to an organization reaching classrooms across the United States and around the world.