To be honest, I am really struggling with this particular assignment and which direction I want to proceed with it. I have found lots of interesting material and have too many ideas at the moment. The things I find of particular interest and would like to focus on will be something to do with one or all of the following:
My audience will be 9-12 grade students from all over Alaska. It will be either a US History or AK History course.
1)WWII and the forced transfer of the people’s of the Aleutian Islands to SE Alaska. The impact of this forced transfer on the communities and peoples of the area. I would like students to not only learn the history of this transfer and the conditions that people lived in while in SE at various internment camps, but also how upon returning to their homes, things changed. Using this to more broadly to look the essential question of ‘why do people move?’ as well as the impacts of current day movement/globalization on people.
2) Adak. Adak fascinates me as it is just a funky place that I think students (or anyone) would be interested in learning about. It has a HUGE abandoned U.S. military base that was deserted after the Cold War era. It is almost a ghost town, but with a small population and a large caribou population that was introduced to the island during the U.S. military years. Looking at different aspects of history, through a case study of Adak, could be interesting. Looking at the essential questions of ‘why is that there?’ and ‘what is worth fighting for?’ would be easily obtained studying Adak.
3) Maps. On most maps, the Aleutians, especially, are put into a few boxes in the corner. I would love to talk about maps– and who makes them. Giving examples of different maps throughout history– where Alaska is placed on these maps, how things are labeled, what was seen as important on the maps.
These are obviously very rough ideas. I had a few solid lessons thought out, but I don’t really like them. So I am back to the brainstorming phase. I look forward to more clarity and a little more focus.