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Thursday, April 30, 2009

Latino bilingual website for teachers to debut

Albany, NY---Officials of the New York State Archives Partnership Trust and Centro de Estudios Puertorriqueños/Center for Puerto Rican Studies (Centro) at Hunter College (in Manhattan) will debut a first-of- its-kind bilingual website designed to showcase Hispanic contributions to New York State history Tuesday, May 5 at 11 a.m. at Hunter College’s Centro.

Known as La Escuela Electrónica (the Electronic Schoolhouse), the new web resource will be available in English and Spanish.

La Escuela Electrónica examines the Latino experience in New York through photographs, letters, broadsides, flyers, and more dating from 1861 to the present. Bilingual introductory videos explain how teachers can use such primary sources in
their classrooms and the kinds of institutions that care for these one-of-a-kind materials.

Within the website, documents are organized by topics selected to correlate to New York’s learning standards: immigration, labor unions, biography, civil rights, culture, urbanization, etc. Many items include historical background information, focus questions, the appropriate learning standards and key ideas, a historical challenge, interdisciplinary activities, and a list of additional resources. Some documents include multiple pages; these carry a link to a printable
PDF.

An additional feature for teachers, the "Build Your Own Worksheet" option, allows users to print a worksheet for each image.

The Electronic Schoolhouse combines historical records and technology to promote the development of critical thinking skills (analyzing and interpreting information), reading and writing skills, understanding historical content and context, and may be used for a range of purposes for foreign language, English as a second language and bilingual education proficiency.

The Electronic Schoolhouse was conceived by the New York State Archives, a part of the State Education Department, and its support arm, the Archives Partnership Trust. It was developed through the collaborative efforts of nine partner institutions, including the New York State Archives, the Centro de Estudios Puertorriqueños, the New York City Department of
Records and Information Services, Cornell University, Hofstra University (Long Island), Hostos Community College (the Bronx), the Dominican Studies Institute at City College (CUNY), the Onondaga Historical Association (Syracuse), and the Rochester Museum and Science Center/Latino Alliance partnership. This project was made possible by the New York State Archives Partnership Trust, through a grant by Time Warner.

source: press release from the NYS Education Department

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