Teaching Iowa History With Local Resources
“Teaching Iowa History With Local Resources” addresses the need for state-specific professional development by (1) providing public school educators with state specific historical information; (2) inspiring educators to teach history with Iowa stories and cultural resources, connecting historical events to local communities through objects, photos and local history; (3) connecting educators to local museum educators and museum collections to illustrate curricular themes with the goal of connecting students to local stories and authentic artifacts to enable them to better understand history at the state, national and international level.
This opportunity has been offered each July since 2015 by the Iowa Museum Association through Heartland AEA. During a two day workshop, instructors shared general history, Iowa history, and specific local history stories related to westward expansion and the Civil War. They illustrated those stories with artifacts from Iowa museum collections. Participants in the workshop capped off the two day workshop by developing a lesson plan for their grade level which used Iowa history and authentic artifacts to illustrate a larger historic theme.
Educators received a pilot-project "Resource Guide" which includes county-specific historical stories related to the theme "Westward Expansion & the Civil War", photographs of artifacts in museum collections related to that theme, and contact information for museums in that county.
This project will continue to develop and change to meet new Iowa Social Studies Standards and conform with best practices in professional development.
The contact person for this program is Cyndi Sweet
, Director, Iowa Museum Association.