WASHINGTON, Jan. 21, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, the Newseum announced that its Digital Classroom learning module "Women, Their Rights and Nothing Less: The First Amendment and the Women's Suffrage Movement" has been endorsed by the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS), an association dedicated to supporting social studies education. The module, made possible by the generous support of the American Association of University Women, explores how the suffragists embraced the First Amendment as a tool to help achieve ratification of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution in 1920, which gave women the right to vote.
NCSS praised the module for its standards-aligned "Historical Connections," "Media Literacy" and "Civics and Citizenship" lenses, which it says help teachers and students gain meaningful understanding and knowledge of how suffragists used their First Amendment rights to advocate for change.
"The suffragists didn't just change the law of the land," explains Barbara McCormack, vice president of education at the Newseum. "They pushed the boundaries of when, where and how citizens could advocate for change. We hope to inspire students with the larger story of risk, failure and, ultimately, success based on effective use of our First Amendment rights."
"Women, Their Rights and Nothing Less" draws on the wealth of resources maintained by the Newseum in its collection of historic artifacts and more than 35,000 newspapers and magazines. The learning module features an interactive timeline with detailed images and descriptions of nearly 300 historic front pages, photographs and artifacts that illustrate how the suffragists used all five freedoms of the First Amendment — speech, religion, press, petition and assembly — to influence public opinion and win support. An interactive map of the United States pinpoints artifacts used to advocate for and against suffrage, and students can document their civic engagement using a scrapbook tool embedded in the site. Nine standards-aligned lesson plans help students hone their historical inquiry, media literacy and civics action skills. The free online learning tool is designed for middle, high school and college teachers and students.
"Women have routinely been written out of history, which is why AAUW is so proud to be part of this digital effort to teach the next generation about the struggle for suffrage," said Linda D. Hallman, executive director and CEO of AAUW. "We're reaching students across the nation and around the globe with quality content that is just a click away. And now, thanks to this stamp of approval from the NCSS, we can better reach another critically important audience — the social studies teachers who are in the classrooms right now bringing these stories to life."
On Jan. 28 at 7 p.m., the Newseum will host a free webinar to train educators how to implement the "Women, Their Rights and Nothing Less" module into high school, college and university classrooms. (Click to watch)
About the Newseum
The Newseum's mission is to champion the five freedoms of the First Amendment through exhibits, public programs and education. The Newseum's dynamic, engaging and interactive museum allows visitors to experience the stories of yesterday and today through the eyes of the media while celebrating the freedoms guaranteed to all Americans by the First Amendment. The Newseum Institute serves as a forum for First Amendment study, exploration and education. The Newseum is a 501(c)(3) public charity funded by generous individuals, corporations and foundations, including the Freedom Forum. For more information, visit newseum.org or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
The American Association of University Women (AAUW) empowers women and girls through advocacy, education, philanthropy and research. The nonpartisan, nonprofit organization has more than 170,000 members and supporters across the United States, as well as 1,000 local branches and more than 800 college and university partners. Since AAUW's founding in 1881, members have examined and taken positions on the fundamental issues of the day — educational, social, economic and political. Learn more at www.aauw.org.