This selection of resources complements Ancestry record collections and oral histories related to United States immigration. The resources help students explore the concepts of identity, membership and belonging, inclusion and exclusion, and the implications of policies and laws through the lens of immigration and migration.
They invite reflection on key questions such as how the United States has determined who may enter the nation, who is considered American, and how those decisions and definitions have impacted people and the course of American democracy. The cases also provide connections for exploring contemporary realities of immigration in the United States and how the choices and actions of immigrants have shaped ideas about freedom and democracy and influenced what it means to be American.
More resources on contemporary immigration are available on request.
Establish a basic understanding of key terms, statistics, and laws related to global migration.
How does each person’s story contribute to the larger narrative of United States history? Students begin by defining what it means to them to be American.
Explore the importance of understanding our own ancestors’ immigration stories.
Consider the idea of what makes a nation using the opinions of philosophers, historians, and journalists.
This reading explores the debate over the 1924 Immigration Act (with discussion questions and audio available.)
Learn about restrictive immigration measures established in the U.S. throughout the 19th century.
Published with the New York Times, this lesson explores how studying immigration history can inform our thinking about contemporary dilemmas.
These teaching ideas will help students make contemporary connections to the policies, debates, and human stories of migration and immigration around the world.
Explore the importance of stories in understanding migration, past and present.
Explore ways to bring World Refugee Day into the classroom using historical and contemporary resources.