Episode 127: Individualizing racism when teaching the Civil Rights Movement with John Wills

In Episode 127, Dan and Michael chat with Dr. John Wills about his new article in Theory & Research in Social Education titled, “‘Daniel was racist’: Individualizing racism when teaching about the Civil Rights Movement.”

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Episode 127 John Wills

Books, Articles and Other Amazing Resources

  1. Wills, J. S. (2019). “Daniel was racist”: Individualizing racism when teaching about the Civil Rights Movement. Theory & Research in Social Education, 47(3), 396-425.
  2. Wills, J. S. (2019). Silencing racism: Remembering and forgetting race and racism in 11th grade US history classes. Teachers College Record, 121(4).
  3. Facing History and Ourselves has a number of great lessons: https://www.facinghistory.org/


John Wills, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor in the Graduate School of Education at the University of California, Riverside. His areas of research include history-social studies education, multicultural education, and schooling and collective memory. He has investigated the inclusion, exclusion, and representation of diverse peoples in history and social studies education in elementary and secondary classrooms, efforts to create more inclusive narratives of U.S. history, and the effects of high stakes standardized testing on elementary social studies curriculum and instruction. Most recently, he had investigated the representation of race and racism in high school U.S. history classes. See more on his university profile: https://profiles.ucr.edu/john.wills.

Episode 126: Lessons, Metaphors, & Planning with the UCLA History-Geography Project

Episode 126: Lessons, Metaphors, & Planning with the UCLA History-Geography Project

In Episode 126, Dan and Michael have a wide ranging chat about lessons, metaphors, and planning with Daniel Diaz, Amparo Chavez-Gonzalez, Miguel Covarrubias, and Chris Lewis of the UCLA History-Geography Project.

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Episode 126

Books, Articles and Other Amazing Resources

  1. Check out the UCLA History-Geography Project: https://centerx.gseis.ucla.edu/history-geography/
  2. The UCLA History-Geography Project “Canvas” planning document: https://www.icloud.com/iclouddrive/0_3Vd7fNqv4fkAchCWXXFLlcw#HGP_Canvas  and worked example of the Canvas: https://www.icloud.com/iclouddrive/05E6ZM-QLRBBYEb3xSmvYvuHg#HGP_Canvas_Recon_Example
  3. The UCLA HGP’s “Lesson Planning Process”: https://www.icloud.com/iclouddrive/0MewWEfUDuu-VMt9VO4_C2inQ#HGP_Lesson_Process. We’re working on our version of the C3 protocol to include pieces important to us such as culturally responsive instruction.


Meet the the UCLA History-Geography Project team: https://centerx.gseis.ucla.edu/history-geography/people/

Daniel Diaz is the Director of the UCLA History-Geography Project and has been with the project for the last 5 years. Prior to this, Daniel taught high school World, US, and AP US History at Roosevelt High School in Boyle Heights and at El Rancho High School in Pico Rivera. Daniel earned his Ed.D in Educational Psychology from USC in 2013. His research focused on learning outcomes for at-risk youth such as homeless and foster students. He ran a non-profit called “Project Deviate” that supported foster youth in Pico Rivera. His work at the UCLA History-Geography Project involves supporting history teachers in urban communities. You can follow the project on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook @uclahgp. You can also visit the UCLA History-Geography Project for lessons, resources, and professional development opportunities.

Amparo Chavez-Gonzalez is a Coach and Lead Facilitator for the UCLA History-Geography Project which she joined in 2004. Amparo has been working in urban schools in New York City and Los Angeles as a History and English teacher in elementary, middle, and high schools since 1990. Early on in her career she joined Central Park East Secondary (CPESS), founded by Deborah Meier and Ted Brown. CPESS was founded with the notion that all students deserve a high quality, project-based, and individualized education.  So Amparo began her journey to curriculum writing, researching primary sources, creating simulations, and emphasizing reading and writing, in her history courses. For a short while Amparo left the classroom to support community organizations supporting teens to enter college but returned to curriculum writing when she joined StreetLaw.  She has her undergraduate degree from Princeton and her MA in the Teaching of Reading and Writing from Columbia, Teacher’s College.  Amparo loves looking at literacy and culturally relevant sources to engage students and get them ready to go to and graduate from high school. Email: amps729@g.ucla.edu

Miguel Covarrubias is a teacher at Cortines High School (VAPA) in Downtown Los Angeles. He has his Bachelor’s degree in History from the University of California, Riverside and his Master’s in Education from the University of California, Los Angeles. He has developed curriculum for LAUSD, the ACLU and the UCLA History-Geography Project. He was the recipient of the United Way Inspirational Teacher Award in 2014. His teaching is rooted in both culturally responsive teaching practices and social cultural theory. He believes teaching history should be a vehicle for creating positive change in communities and should give a voice to marginalized communities whose stories and contributions have long been left out of mainstream history instruction.

Chris Lewis is a Teacher on Special Assignment supporting English Learners and is currently teaching ELD 2.  He has taught Social Science and English, primarily AP United States History and AVID, for the last fifteen years at Mountain View High School in El Monte, CA.  Chris earned his Ph.D. in Education from Chapman University (Orange, CA) in 2015 and his dissertation, “The Spaces Between Dystopia and Utopia: Student Perspectives on Identity, Schooling, and Resistance,” explores the ways youth analyze dystopian fiction and its impact on their identity formation and civic engagement.  His research interests include student voice, young adult dystopian literature, civic engagement, and LGBTQ histories. Follow him on Twitter @chrislewis_10 and read about his work at www.ateachersponderings.com.