Professional Development

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We’ve observed how effectively Inspired Teaching’s teachers engage students in the learning process, stimulating inquiry and imagination. Kids love learning in this setting; it’s a great dropout prevention!

— Diana Davis Spencer, President of the Diana Davis Spencer Foundation
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May 26 03:20 pm

Learn more about how Real World History transforms the school experience for DC high school students
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Real World History

How do we engage young people so they actively shape and lead their own education? How do we prepare students for workplace success while also motivating them to be lifelong learners?

Apply for Real World History for SY18-19


Starting in school year 2014-15, Center for Inspired Teaching introduced a new approach to answering these critical questions, combining academic coursework with relevant internships to immerse DC students from high schools across the city in Real World History.

In November 2014, Real World History was one of 14 programs around the nation to receive a LRNG Innovation Challenge grant from the National Writing Project in partnership with the MacArthur Foundation and John Legend’s Show Me Campaign.

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(Real World History students discuss the Great Migration on a conference call with author Isabel Wilkerson.)

Supported by DC Public Schools; Capital City Public Charter School; the SEED School of Washington, DC; EL Haynes Public Charter School; Maya Angelou Public Charter School; and Next Step Public Charter School, the Real World History course is piloting a new way to gauge high school success, providing a blueprint for 21st century teaching and learning that will be shared with visiting educators, policymakers, and community leaders from across the city.

Students enrolled in Real World History will be educated in the classroom and at institutions that have agreed to supervise, train, and evaluate student interns, including: the Anacostia Museum, Mary McLeod Bethune House, Congressional Cemetery, Frederick Douglass House, Library of Congress, President Lincoln’s Cottage, National Archives and Records Administration, National Building Museum, National Museum of American History, National Park Service (at the National Mall), National Portrait Gallery, Charles Sumner Museum & Archives, Tudor Place, Woodrow Wilson House, and the Carter G. Woodson House.

At the 2015 DC National History Day, two Real World History students won the group documentary competition for their short film on W.E.B. Du Bois and the 1900 World Fair.

Learn more about Real World History, and follow our progress as Inspired Teaching, DC schools, and historic sites across DC explore a new way to bring history to life for students.

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