Welcome to Archive/Counterarchive

Educational Guides

Learn more about the pedagogical guides that we are creating on archives and counter-archives.

Educational Guides

One of the central goals of Archive/Counter-Archive is to increase public engagement with our partner organizations and their collections through an “activation” of archival materials that foregrounds the pressing need to rethink what archives can/might do in the 21st century. In order to achieve this goal, we have developed a series of Educational Guides designed to accompany film and video from A/CA’s Case Studies and facilitate their integration into K-12 and postsecondary classrooms through explicit links to the curriculum and suggestions for classroom discussion.

In the same way that A/CA is interested in the disruptive, resistant, and enriching potential of counter-archives, we envision these Educational Guides as a kind of counter-curriculum that mobilize new images, stories, and histories in schools. In this way, we hope they cultivate what might be described as an “educational common” to the extent that they work toward facilitating pedagogical spaces that understand storytelling as a heterogenous, community-driven, and relational practice.1 The educational common must be produced rather than discovered, continually recreated via collaboration and cooperation, and we hope the A/CA Educational Guides can facilitate such collaboration between the partner archives and public schools.

Each of the A/CA Educational Guides is designed for a particular education level and/or curriculum area. However, the guides are also easily adaptable to different grades and subjects, and educators are encouraged to use these guides as a starting point to create their own lesson plans. Each guide contains important contextual information about the materials featured, including information on key participants, essays and reflections, and synopses of selected works for classroom discussion. The guides also include critical discussion questions oriented toward a range of topics in the areas of both form and content to encourage students and teachers to engage critically with A/CA’s archival materials by making connections between their context of creation and contemporary issues and experiences.

1See Low, Brushwood Rose, and Salvio, Community-Based Media Pedagogies: Relational Practices of Listening in the Commons. Routledge, 2016.