Opportunities for Teachers and Their Students at the Seattle Meeting
Amy J. Kinsel, December 2004
Responding to complaints from members that the annual meeting has become stale over the years, the AHA Council has decided to begin making some changes to the structure and format of the meeting.1 The Association hopes to make the meeting more inclusive by designing activities to attract a broader range of AHA members. With this goal in mind, the AHA this year is offering two new programs for teachers who attend the Seattle meeting—a special group preregistration rate for high school and undergraduate history teachers who bring their history students to the meeting, and an arrangement with the Seattle School District that allows Washington state K–12 teachers to earn continuing education credit for attending the meeting. A similar agreement with the Puget Sound Educational Service District is pending. The AHA hopes this outreach effort will encourage teachers to attend the annual meeting.
Group Pre-Registration Rate for Teachers and Students
The new group pre-registration rate for teachers and students will allow teachers and young historians access to academic sessions, roundtable discussions, historical tours, and the exhibit hall. For a special preregistration fee of just $50, high school and undergraduate history teachers gain admission to the entire meeting for themselves and five AP history students or undergraduate history majors or minors. This special rate is available only through preregistration, which closes December 10, 2004. Teachers and their students who preregister at the reduced rate will receive special badges when they check in at the meeting. Don't be surprised if you notice eager high school and college students at sessions in Seattle.
In addition to the teacher-student group rate, the AHA is once again offering a reduced preregistration rate of $20 for K–12 teachers ($25 onsite).
Continuing Education Credit for Washington State Teachers
For the first time, the AHA has arranged for Washington state teachers who attend the annual meeting to receive continuing education credit, known as "Clock Hours," through the Seattle School District. These credits will count toward the 150 professional development hours that Washington state teachers must accumulate every five years to maintain their teaching certification. Teachers who wish to participate in this program should register for the meeting at the pre-collegiate teacher rate ($20 for preregistration or $25 for onsite registration). Teachers registering at the reduced rate should provide evidence of status, such as copy of an ID or business card or a letter on school stationery. When they arrive at the meeting interested teachers will be able to earn from 2 to 20 hours of credit depending on how many sessions they attend. To receive the credit, teachers must sign in daily at the Local Arrangements Committee office, located in Room 201 in the Washington State Convention and Trade Center to verify attendance, pay a $2 per credit fee to the Seattle School District for administering and recording their credits, and complete course evaluation forms for the sessions they attend. The LAC office will remain open until 3 p.m. on Sunday, January 9, so that teachers who attend 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. sessions can fill out their evaluation forms. The AHA encourages Washington state teachers to take advantage of this opportunity to earn continuing education credit by attending AHA sessions.
Teachers are, of course, welcome to attend any session on the program. However, there are several sessions that may be of particular interest. (Numbers in parentheses refer to AHA session numbers.) Sessions on the history of the Pacific Northwest include "African American Community Organization Strategies in the Civil Rights Era Urban West" (38); "Fishers and Fish Workers in the Pacific Northwest: Labor and Environmental History Reconsidered" (85, joint with the Labor and Working Class History Association); and Coordinating Council for Women in History session 7, "The Public Face of Pacific Northwest Women's History." The AHA's Teaching Division sponsors several sessions, including "Primary Sources and Historical Inquiry in K–12 Settings" (61); a forum on the impact on Teaching American History projects in the classroom (88); "Teaching Europe in a Global Context in the European History Survey Course" (99); a session on teaching the American Revolution in the history survey (118); and "Archives, Artifacts, and Artistry in the Secondary Classroom: The Vietnam War as Case Study" (141). The AHA and the World History Association co-sponsor session 146, "Teaching the Analysis of Primary Sources and Change over Time in the World History Survey Course." On Saturday, January 8, 12:15–1:45 p.m., the Teaching Division, the College Board, and the World History Association sponsor a luncheon for Advanced Placement history teachers in the Sheraton's Douglas Room. Nancy Cott of the Schlesinger Library, Harvard University, will deliver an address entitled "What Does ‘Gender History' Mean?" Tickets will be available from the meal ticket cashiers in the AHA registration area.
Other sessions that may be of interest include a forum on the master's degree in history (3) and a session on "Artifacts and Artifice: Collecting Memories of the American Experience" (15). Teachers are also welcome to attend sessions and events organized by the AHA's affiliated societies; on Friday, January 7, 12:15–1:45 p.m., the Organization of History Teachers will sponsor a luncheon in the Sheraton's Douglas Room. OHT president William Everdell (Saint Ann's School, Brooklyn, New York) will speak on "American History, World History, European History: Must Teachers Choose?" Tickets will be available from the meal ticket cashiers. On Saturday, January 8 at 9:30 a.m. the Center for History and New Media will sponsor a roundtable on "Bringing Digital History into the Introductory Survey Classroom" in the Sheraton's West Ballroom A.
Teachers attending the meeting are encouraged to attend the General Meeting, which will take place on Friday, January 7 at 8:30 p.m. in the Sheraton's Grand Ballroom C. AHA President Jonathan Spence (Yale Univ.) will speak on "Cliffhanger Lives: A Chinese Family in the Seventeenth Century." Spence and President-elect James Sheehan (Stanford Univ.) will present the AHA awards, including the Eugene Asher Distinguished Teaching Award, the Beveridge Family Teaching Prize, and the Nancy Lyman Roelker Mentorship Award. Teachers are also welcome to attend the Committee on Women Historians' breakfast at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday, January 8 in the Sheraton's Metropolitan Ballroom. Elizabeth Lunbeck of Princeton University will deliver the keynote address; tickets much be purchased in advance using the preregistration form. A limited number will be available at the meal-ticket windows on a first-come, first-served basis.
If you have questions about programs for teachers at the 2005 meeting in Seattle, contact the AHA or Amy Kinsel at 206-546-4679.
—Amy J. Kinsel, a history instructor at Shoreline Community College, is a member of the Local Arrangements Committee.
1. Roy Rosenzweig, "Should the AHA Meeting Be Changed? AHA Members and Council Say ‘Yes!'" Perspectives (September 2004).