As teachers and students settle into the spring semester, we hope that 2021 will bring more health, more justice, and more peace. This has been a difficult time to be an educator, and many of us are feeling the impact of so many months of trying to support our students, our families, and ourselves.
Despite everything, we’ve made some exciting changes to the Teach Palestine Project and to our website. We’re honored to add Dr. Samia Shoman to our staff as co-coordinator of the project. A Palestinian educator with many years of experience as a high school teacher, Samia co-led our delegation of teachers to Palestine last year.
Samia and I are working with a statewide campaign to ensure that Arab American studies—including Palestine—is in the California Model Ethnic Studies Curriculum. The campaign has faced strong resistance from Zionist forces, but it has helped us build strong relationships with teachers interested in teaching about Palestine throughout the state and beyond. Here’s a link to a thought-provoking and inspiring webinar on the fight for Ethnic Studies with guest speaker Angela Davis!
Samia led a workshop on teaching Arab American studies as part of the campaign. Here are links to the workshop and the resources. You can follow the campaign at the Save Arab American Studies website. Please sign on to the teacher letter!
We just posted new curriculum from San Francisco English teacher Kristia Castrillo. Kristia was part of the Teach Palestine Teacher Delegation in June 2019. She came home and taught an amazing unit focused on the graphic novel Jerusalem: Chronicles from the Holy Land. Check it out!
We’ve created a new Resources section: Webinars for Teachers. Be sure to check out “The Environmental Impact of Colonization: From Palestine to the US/Mexico Border.” This webinar was the first of three in a collaboration with the Xicanx Institute for Teaching and Organizing. It includes invaluable mini-lectures by Jamal Juma’, cofounder of Stop the Wall, the Palestinian Grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign, speaking from Jerusalem, Palestine; and Amy Juan of the Tohono O’odham Nation, International Indian Treaty Council, speaking from Tohono O’odham land in the US/Mexico border region.
The second webinar in the series, Organizing for Decolonial Ethnic Studies: From Palestine to the US/Mexico Border, will be posted soon. Let us know if you’d like to sign up for the third workshop on March 13.