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 Richland High teacher creating Vietnam War unit for state online toolkit

Theresa Buczek, social studies teacher at Richland High School, is developing an online unit about the Vietnam War that will be available to teachers state-wide. Buczek’s work will become part of the state’s Open Educational Resource, a new toolkit of inquiry based social studies units.

In late June, Buczek joined 26 teacher leaders from across the state and professors from the University of Washington and Eastern Washington University to begin work on the digital toolkit.

“We’re creating inquiry based units with engaging lessons that other teachers can replicate in their classrooms,” explains Buczek. “As we continue, we will train other teachers forming a statewide collaboration. Washington has amazing teachers with incredible ideas to share with others. The Open Educational Resource connects us.”

Below is background from Theresa on why she chose the Vietnam War as her focus……

“Recently, I read Teaching U.S. History as a Mystery by David Gerwin and Jack Zevin; the "mystery" over The Gulf of Tonkin incident demonstrates how perspective, bias, and motive can influence the actions of individuals. This particular incident set the course for America's commitment to a controversial war that would divide our country and drive military, political, and cultural changes.

“My father served as a Marine in the Vietnam War and I was fortunate enough to learn about a piece of history through his experiences. Many students do not realize that their parents and grandparents are walking eyewitnesses to what we call history; this inquiry based unit will encourage students to learn from these eyewitnesses.”