The Battle of Red Bank Liberty Fellowship
Woodbury City Public Schools is an urban district in southern New Jersey near the site of the Battle of Red Bank during the Revolutionary War. About half of the students are from minority backgrounds, and the number of Latino students is growing. The district's history teachers have had few opportunities for professional development. History specialists will lead eight days of training a year, including two 2-day colloquia, two half days of research and review, and a 3-day summer institute. The project will also present 12 evening videoconferences that will be open to all district teachers. Each year, 40 teacher fellows will participate in activities designed in a turnkey train-the-trainer approach. The Battle of Red Bank project aims to help teachers, and thereby students, examine history through the lens of a historian. Teachers will study substantive content through researching political, economic, legal, and social events and issues in American history. They will look at contemporary and later historiographies, along with primary documents. Instructional strategies will include Binary Paideia and Understanding by Design. These strategies will be incorporated into teacher-designed lessons, which will also employ the American Institute for History Education's Talking History network, 12-step process for student research, and frameworks and strategies. Classroom observations and coaching will help teachers refine their lessons so they can be used by other teachers. Online resources provided through CICERO, a Web-based history resource, will be available to fellows and all district teachers. The project will develop a cadre of trainers to deliver turnkey replication of project activities, and a collection of lesson units that use innovative classroom strategies.