Browse Teaching

Explore commonly taught topics along with related primary sources, discussion questions, teaching strategies, and annotated bibliographies.

thumbnail of a veena

Long Teaching Module: Bhakti Poets

This teaching module outlines the Bhakti Movement - a Hindu religious movement originating in the 6th century CE that was inspired by a number of prominent women poets. The module contains an essay that provides an overview of history and significance of the Bhakti and a number of images and samples of Bhakti poetry.

pampers thumbnail

Activity: Material Culture and Childhood (20th c.)

Childhood is an ever-changing concept that varies from culture to culture across time and space, yet people often think of childhood as universal. Teaching students about children in the past is often a challenging endeavor for this very reason.

Title page for The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano

Long Teaching Module: Children in the Slave Trade

From the 16th to the 18th centuries, an estimated 12 million Africans crossed the Atlantic to the Americas in the trans-Atlantic slave trade. Used on plantations throughout the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean, enslaved Africans were shipped largely from West Africa.

thumbnail of the text

Long Teaching Module: African Scouting (20th c.)

Conceived by General Sir Robert Baden Powell to reduce class tensions in early 20th-century Britain, the Boy Scout movement evolved into an international youth movement that offered a romantic program of vigorous outdoor life for boys and adolescents as a cure for the physical decline and social disruption caused by industrialization and urbanization.

Mencius and his Mother: A Lesson Drawn from Weaving thumbnail

Long Teaching Module: Children in Ancient China

The unprecedented interest in the child who assumed unique importance in the Han period was set into motion by a convergence of historically-specific conditions: (1) the establishment in the Qin dynasty (221-207 BCE) and the further development in Han times (206 BCE-220 CE) of a merit-based civil service, which increased the educational and occupational opportunities of boys moving up the socia

thumbnail of the book excerpt

Long Teaching Module: Children in Late Imperial China, 900-1930

An exploration of primary sources on childhood in late imperial China (framed broadly as the Song through Qing dynasties, ca. 960-1911 CE) offers a window into lived experience and the diverse ways in which childhood itself could be imagined and articulated.

thumbnail of the text

Long Teaching Module: Educational Reform in Japan (19th c.)

Soon after overthrowing the Tokugawa government in 1868, the new Meiji leaders set out ambitiously to build a modern nation-state. Among the earliest and most radical of the Meiji reforms was a plan for a centralized, compulsory educational system, modeled after those in Europe and America.

Title page of the Decameron

Long Teaching Module: Children during the Black Death

The Black Death was the first and most lethal outbreak of a disease that entered Italy during the end of 1347 and the beginning of 1348 and then spread across Europe in the following few years. It is generally accepted (despite recent arguments to the contrary) that this most famous medieval epidemic was caused by bubonic plague.

Book of Children by Thomas Phaer

Long Teaching Module: Children’s Health in Early Modern England

Children and youth in early modern England (1500-1800) were subject to many diseases and physical hardships. From the great epidemic diseases of bubonic plague and smallpox, to more common illnesses such as measles and influenza that still afflict children today, sickness put children and youth at great risk.

thumbnail of the text

Long Teaching Module: Sexuality, Marriage, and Age of Consent Laws, 1700-2000

In western law, the age of consent is the age at which an individual is treated as capable of consenting to sexual activity. Consequently, any one who has sex with an underage individual, regardless of the circumstances, is guilty of a crime.

Chart of School Population in Buenos Aires, Argentina image thumbnail

Long Teaching Module: Parents, Children, and Political Authority in 19th century Argentina

Between 1810 and 1860, Argentina emerged as a deeply divided nation. One of the main problems that remained unresolved throughout the 19th century was how power would be shared between Buenos Aires, the capital, and the rest of the provinces. Juan Manuel de Rosas, who ruled the country between 1829 and 1852, provided some semblance of order.

Thumbnail of ijazahs diploma

Long Teaching Module: Education in the Middle East, 1200-2010

In recent years, westerners have been fascinated by the education of children in the Middle East, raising concern over whether or not schools teach extreme radicalism or anti-Americanism. The Arabic word madrasa, which literally means "school," has come to imply in the minds of some pundits and politicians a pro-terrorism center with political or religious affiliation.

Title page of The Ancient History of the Maori

Long Teaching Module: New Zealand Childhoods (18th–20th c.)

This teaching module explores how colonization shaped the nature of childhood in New Zealand both among indigenous populations and those of European descent.

Short Teaching Module: Children and Daguerreotypes (19th c.)

For historians, there are several ongoing debates about the periodization of childhood and its transformation over time. When did children become important and in what capacity? As economic contributors? As the focus of emotional attachment or as subjects prone sentimental idealization? As political symbols or pawns?

Short Teaching Module: Graffiti, Gender, and Youth (20th c.)

I use "graffiti art" – the unmediated writings, paintings, and drawings that began to appear in public spaces in New York, Philadelphia, and elsewhere on the east coast during late 1960s – in order to examine the: status of young people as valid historical actors and "citizens" relative to adults; changing access of young people to shared public spaces; gendering practices within youth cultures

Comic with two figures in a raised bed

Short Teaching Module: Winsor McCay's Little Nemo in Slumberland

A young, tousled-haired boy about the age of seven is slumbering away in his bed, ensconced in a non-descript, middle class bedroom (fig. 1). He is jarred awake by the revelation that his bed is levitating, and slowly floating out his window and into space.

thumbnail of the text

Short Teaching Module: Children and Disability (19th, 20th c.)

In studying the historical meaning of disability in the U.S., official reports of the myriad institutions established for the care, education, training, and sometimes merely confinement, of persons whose differences set them apart have been a key source of information.

Little Women

Short Teaching Module: Girlhood and Little Women

Scholars often label the period between 1865 and 1920 the "Golden Age" of Anglo-American children's literature, as this is the period when many of the classics were written and published, including Alice in Wonderland (1865), Ragged Dick (1868), Tom Sawyer (1876), Treasure Island (1884), Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm (1903), The Secret Garden (1911) to name just a few.

Birth Rituals in the Codex Mendoza thumbnail image

Short Teaching Module: Codex Mendoza (16th c.)

In Mexico City, towards the middle of the 16th century, Nahuatl-speaking painters created the Codex Mendoza, one of the most lavish indigenous accounts of history and moral behavior known today. Across pages of expensive, imported paper, the painters of the C.

thumbnail of the text

Short Teaching Module: Children and Human Rights (20th c.)

On April 18, 2008, Pope Benedict XVI told the United Nations General Assembly, "The promotion of human rights remains the most effective strategy for eliminating inequalities between countries and social groups, and for increasing security".