Borealia is launching a new occasional series called Teach My Research to help connect research and teaching, putting the latest scholarship on early Canadian history–Indigenous, French, British, or early national, to about 1900–into our classrooms.
We are inviting authors of recent historical monographs or research articles to think about how their scholarship could translate into high school or university classrooms, providing teachers and students with curricular connections, discussion questions, and primary source materials.
Here are some of the questions we hope authors will take up:
- What is your book or article about? Briefly, what are its main themes, central argument, narrative structure, and historiographic contributions?
- What are some curricular connections between your research and common class topics or courses in early North American history? When might teachers include your work, and how does your research affect common narratives? Feel free to make suggestions for secondary, undergraduate, and graduate teaching situations.
- If instructors were to excerpt a chapter or two from your book, which chapters do you think would be most useful, and why?
- Did your book or article utilize any publicly available primary sources? If so, what are they, what did they do for your study, and how might instructors use them in their classes? Please provide links, images, or excerpts (where copyright allows), so that instructors can easily bundle them with your research.
- Have you integrated any of the lessons learned from this research project into your own teaching? If so, how and to what effect?
- What is the biggest misunderstanding you feel that students have related to your subject? What do you think is the most effective way of disabusing students of this misunderstanding?
- What historical thinking concepts or skills (e.g. use of primary source evidence, complexity, context, ethical reflection) does your work help students to learn? Can you suggest an activity to dig into this further, or tell a backstory that illustrates how historians work?
Our hope is that Borealia can play the role of pedagogical sommelier, pairing research and teaching to bring out the best in both. We envision posts of about 1000-1500 words. Authors of recent books or research articles, please send us a pitch at email@example.com. And if you are a classroom instructor who has already made connections like these, we’d love to hear from you, either briefly via Twitter or in longer form here at the blog as a resource for others.
[We gratefully acknowledge that the inspiration for this occasional series, and some of the questions we ask, come from our friends at Teaching United States History. Special thanks to Managing Editor, Ben Wright. Those who teach across North American boundaries will find plenty of excellent pedagogical conversations and resources at the blog and their Teach My Book series.]