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2015 Institute > Project Overview

Project Overview

This Institute will survey the Himalayan region’s political and cultural history, connecting this area to wider developments in the history of India and China. Hinduism and Buddhism will be emphasized, as well as the Bön faith and folk traditions that have existed alongside the dominant religions. Art, architecture, literature, and folklore will be surveyed and the Institute will conclude with consideration of the region today, especially the environmental and political challenges facing the peoples there.

The Institute will run for four weeks, meeting weekdays for morning and afternoon sessions. A typical day will have a morning seminar emphasizing factual content and an afternoon session to develop curricular resources. Evenings and weekends will be free for reading. In addition to the expert presentations on the region, the directors plan field trips (Worcester Art Museum, Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Hindu temple, Newark Museum, Rubin Museum, Tibetan monastery) and frequent workshop sessions designed to provide teachers with new and innovative curricular tools.

The Directors and the Curriculum Specialist will hold regular office hours during the Institute, and will schedule individual appointments as requested. Coursework will include an ambitious set of readings and the preparation by each participant of a customized Teacher Implementation Plan, describing at least three case studies for classroom use. Participants are expected to publish their Implementation Plans on the Institute Web Site at the end of the workshop, and can update them with their actual classroom experiences for the next two years. In-service and graduate credit can be earned for the Institute.