The Society’s partnership with Bard High School Early College expanded to include professional development workshops for teachers with the Bard College Institute for Writing & Thinking. The goal of these workshops is to give teachers the tools they need to teach jurisprudence and its implications on society in their classrooms.

Workshops include descriptions along with links to documents in the left-hand column. The workshop materials are educator-prepared, and we've also provided connections to the New York State Education Department's 175 and 75 Hour Professional Development Requirement in the Professional Development PDF. Relevant topic headings are listed below the PDF link. Your local school district is the only body that can determine what activities will or will not fulfill professional development requirements.

Thinking Historically through Writing
Prepared by the Bard College Institute for Writing & Thinking

The purpose of this workshop is to provide tools for teachers to understand how to better help their students learn about the law. Featuring primary source documents from the era of John Locke to contemporary times, these materials include information about text rendering, collaborative reading, radical revision, process writing, and metacognitive thinking. Other tips for teachers include different types of informal writing, creating dialectical response journals, and different principles of writing.

Justice and the New York Courts
Prepared by the Bard College Institute for Writing & Thinking

This professional development workshop on Justice and the New York Courts is the result of a partnership between the Historical Society of the New York Courts and the Bard College Institute for Writing and Thinking. The workshop is geared to Middle and High School teachers of Social Studies and English Language Arts, and aims to bring writing-rich pedagogical strategies into the classroom through the teaching of primary historical legal sources.

The workshops were held at the Brighton Central School District in Rochester New York in December 2016 and at Bard College in February 2017 and revolved around the question: What is the nature of an independent judiciary and what is its critical importance to our Federalist system of checks and balances? Texts used among others are Alexander Hamilton’s famous dissertation on the federal judiciary in The Federalist Papers (Federalist #78); the Preamble to the United States Constitution; the seminal New York 1852 slave case State of New York v. Lemmon; a contemporaneous (1860) journalistic response to this case; and recent articles addressing current debates and considerations surrounding the proper role of the judiciary.

Also included here as a PDF are the 5-12 (2016) grade common core requirements for literacy in History and Social Studies. While these requirements may evolve over time, they provide a general and helpful rubric for evaluating pedagogical strategies that promote discerning comprehension and effective communication.

Introduction to Bard College Institute for Writing and Thinking Practices
Sample Professional Development One Day Workshop
Sample Student Lesson Plans

Historical Society Resources
Alexander Hamilton
The Federalist
New York & the Ratification of the Federal Constitution (1788) Primary Source Document and Transcript
Judicial Notice: The Lemmon Slave Case by John D. Gordan, III
Louis Napoleon
Chester A. Arthur
William M. Evarts
John Jay
Charles O'Conor
Henry D. Lapaugh
Elijah Paine, Jr.
Hiram Denio
William Wright

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