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Teaching the Causes of the American Civil War, 1850-1861


Edited By Michael E. Karpyn

The American Civil War lasted from 1861 to 1865, killing nearly 700,000 Americans and costing the country untold millions of dollars. The events of this tragic war are so steeped in the collective memory of the United States and so taken for granted that it is sometimes difficult to take a step back and consider why such a tragic war occurred. To consider the series of events that led to this war are difficult and painful for students and teachers in American history classrooms. Classroom teachers must possess the appropriate pedagogical and historical resources to provide their students with an appropriate and meaningful examination of this challenging time period. Teaching the Causes of the American Civil War, 18501861 will attempt to provide these resources and teaching strategies to allow for the thoughtful inquiry, evaluation and assessment of this critical, complex and painful time period in American history.

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Series index


In the United States, the Common Core Standards, the C3 Framework for Social Studies Standards (NCSS), and the 10 themes of the National Curriculum Standards (NCS/NCSS) each pose challenges for teachers preparing to teach skills, content, and critical issues of American history. The problem for many middle and secondary teachers is that textbooks do not contain sufficient primary source documents and varied secondary literature linked to these standards. The volumes in the Teaching Critical Themes in American History series fill this need by providing teachers with history content, pedagogical strategies, and teaching resources. The series is organized around key problems/issues in American history so that teachers can select which critical topics upon which they might want to concentrate.

Middle and Secondary pre- and in-service educators will find the books in this series essential for developing and implementing American history and social studies curriculum in diverse and complex classrooms. Teachers will find the books in this series valuable as they search for methodologies and material that will help them address the Common Core Standards in the social sciences and history. Community College history instructors can also find the books in this series helpful as supplementary texts in their U.S. history survey courses. The practical—not to mention exciting—implementation of perspectives offered in each title is a key feature of this series.

This series will address topics such as the formation of the American Republic, the problem of slavery in America, causes of the Civil War, emancipation...

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