The purpose of this curriculum set is to supply teachers with social studies content for delivery through a variety of effective teaching strategies for the classroom. While the units are intended for use by educators with 5th – 9th grade classrooms, the curriculum sets can be modified for middle childhood generalists to adolescence and young adulthood Social Studies and History teachers. Each lesson corresponds to and meets both Common Core and OSPI educational guidelines.
A second purpose for this curriculum is to provide classroom materials in which the growing number of Asian American students may “see” themselves included in their classrooms. Providing information on the many communities which students come from validates their existence in the United States and prevents them from feeling excluded or marginalized. Inclusion of API American stories and histories recognizes that these families and communities are as integral to American culture and the history of the U.S. as are contributions and experiences from other ethnic and racial groups.
Lastly, by offering API American content, teachers can demonstrate to all students the diversity of experiences of Americans, but also allow for cross-cultural connections by noting the similarities as well as the differences. It is also hoped that students of all backgrounds will be encouraged by the personal stories of this curriculum to connect with their own families and communities to discover stories that enrich and empower their growing sense of self.
In developing the curriculum and establishing objectives, the underlying goals were for all students to:
- Understand cultural diversity, human rights, and the universal connections between individuals and communities.
- Become more aware of the origins and effects of exclusion, prejudice, stereotyping and racial discrimination.
- Understand backgrounds and journeys of immigrants, including the experiences of refugees.
- Engage in issues associated with settlement in the U.S. and the impact this might have on immigrants and refugees.
- Acknowledge positive contributions made by immigrants and refugees to this country.