“History is a clock that people use to tell their political and cultural time of day. It is also a compass that people use to find themselves on the map of human geography. History tells a people where they have been, what they have been, where they are and what they are. Most importantly, history tells a people where they still must go and what they still must be. The relationship of history to the people is the same as the relationship of a mother to her child.”
–John Henrik Clarke
The range of students taking history courses are diverse. Some may not be history majors nor fully invested in the subject matter at hand. Others will come to the classroom with different levels of background knowledge. In either case, it is important to reach each student, providing them with the fundamentals of rigorous research methodologies and demonstrating where the course material intersects with their interests. In the classroom, I emphasize continual practice in verbal and written communication skills as well as rigorous research methodologies. I have found students are rarely taught how to read academic material and synthesize academic arguments. Therefore, I teach foundational reading and writing skills whenever possible.