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Program in the Humanities

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

The Warren A. Nord Teachers’ Seminar

“The mixture of scholarly lectures with interactive lesson plan exploration was helpful because it allowed us to immediately apply the content to our classroom.  Most conferences, it is ‘either/or’ – this conference has been unique and wonderful.” ~2012 teacher participant

The Warren A. Nord Teachers seminar, named for the long-time director of the Program in the Humanities, is a special  professional development event for teachers that is held each summer. The agenda traditionally includes lectures on a variety of relevant topics from distinguished collegiate faculty, active exploration of classroom-ready lessons plans on related topics, as well as time to learn from and network with teachers from across the state.

The 2016-2017 Warren A. Nord Fellowship: Global Islam & the Arts

For the 2016-2017 school year, the Nord Seminar implemented a new year-long fellowship program model. Partnering with the Duke-UNC Consortium for Middle East Studies and Carolina Performing Arts, 15 teachers were selected from over 50 quality applications for the “Global Islam & the Arts Teacher Fellows.” This intensive professional development opportunity will feature a year-long exploration of Muslim cultures through music, dance, and dramatic performances during the 2016-17 Carolina Performing Arts season, integrated with readings, scholarship, discussion, and pedagogy. This project aims to deepen teachers’ understanding of global Islam through a cultural arts perspective while dispelling misconceptions and encouraging culturally responsible teaching in the K-12 classroom. Learn about the program and meet the Nord Fellows by clicking here.

The 2015 Warren A. Nord Seminar: An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the US

Featured speakers from the seminar, hosted at the NC Museum of History in Raleigh, NC, included:

  • Race to the Truth: Transforming the Teaching of American Indian Students, Dr. Priscilla Maynor, imaginED Partners
  • Colonization, Cooperation, & Resistance: Anglo-Indian Conflicts from Lost Colony to Cherokee Wars, Dr. Wayne Lee, UNC-Chapel Hill
  • Learning and Unlearning about American Indian Education, Dr. Jane Haladay, UNC-Pembroke
  • American Indians during the Civil War Period,  Dr. Susanna Lee, NC State University
  • Indian Removal as Ethnic Cleansing, Dr. Greg O’Brien, UNC-Greensboro
  • American Indians and Culturally Responsive Instruction, Kara Stewart, Literacy Coach, Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools, Sappony Tribal Council, and the NC State Advisory Council on Indian Education
  • Indian Students, White Schools: A Local Civil Rights Story, Dr. Olivia Oxendine, UNC-Pembroke

Featured lesson plans on American Indian history can be accessed by clicking on the links below:

The 2013 Warren A. Nord Seminar: The Fight for Freedom: From Slavery to Civil Rights

Corresponding lesson plans are listed under each presentation title:

I thank you for allowing teachers the opportunity to join together to learn, share and receive new and exciting materials and lessons to continue to educate our children.  Thank you!!” –  2013 teacher participant

 The 2012 Warren A. Nord Seminar: Challenges to Democracy

Corresponding lesson plans are listed under each presentation title:

  •  Strength through Struggle: The 1898 Wilmington Race Riot – Lerae Umfleet, NC Department of Cultural Resources & author of “Day of Blood: The 1898 Wilmington Race Riot
  • Equal Protection in a Constitutional Democracy:  Exploring Equality & Women’s Rights with United States v. Virginia – Tom Metzloff, Professor of Law, Duke University & Creator of the Voices of American Law Project

*Additional lesson plans on these topics and hundreds more can be found in the Consortium’s Database of K-12 Resources.

“I have always wanted to teach controversial topics in my classroom, but I did not know how to approach these sensitive issues.  Thank you for giving me the tools to be successful in the classroom.” ~2012 teacher participant

About Warren Nord

Dr. Nord was the founding director of the Program in the Humanities and Human Values, a position he held from 1979-2004. While he was director of the Program, it sponsored over 700 seminars, workshops, and conferences, attended by more than 40,000 participants. His seminars “Good and Evil” and “God and Suffering” were so popular that they sold out several years in a row. Dr. Nord taught the philosophy of religion and the philosophy of education in at UNC from 1981 until his retirement from the University in 2009, and his research and writing focused on the place of religion in American education.

Upon his retirement, supporters established the Warren A. Nord fund that enables the Program to offer summer training opportunities for teachers. The popularity of and positive response to each summer’s Warren A. Nord Seminar is a testament to Dr. Nord’s legacy.

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