A group of High school students is viewing history from women’s perspectives by focusing on the outlooks of women who had done something of historical significance.
The projects commemorated Women’s History Month, and were the result of a weekend inspiration for Durango High School teacher Dale Garland. “It was one of those Friday night inspiration moments,” he said. “I thought, as a social studies teacher, if I’m not teaching it, I bet my peers aren’t either.”
Some of the subjects were familiar and well known. Students did presentations about Marie Curie, Harriet Tubman, Audrey Hepburn, Coco Chanel, Winnie Mandela, Malala Yousfazai and Florence Nightingale.
“One group of guys studied Catherine the Great,” Garland said. “By the end they were thinking: Wow, this woman tried to modernize an entire country.”
Another group of boys learned about Rosalind Franklin, a groundbreaking researcher on DNA who received no acknowledgement for her work.
“After they looked at her,” Garland said, “ they became interested in the Matilda effect, and looked at other women who did research and didn’t get the credit.”