Teaching American Philosophy

Teaching American Philosophy is a one of a kind resource for high school teachers looking for ways to introduce students to the philosophical ideas and debates that are central to American history, literature, political science, and science. The materials on this site should prove especially useful for teachers implementing the new Common Core standards for the "integration of knowledge and ideas," particularly for analyzing key American historical documents, political arguments, and literary expressions. Included here are:

  • 11 annotated primary readings from four important thinkers: Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758), Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), and William James (1842-1910)
  • An annotated bibliography of secondary readings
  • A timeline establishing the intellectual and cultural contexts in which the four thinkers wrote that is chock full of carefully chosen images and information
  • Lesson plans created by teachers and scholars working in collaboration

But first: What is American Philosophy?