We are pleased to inform you that during the week of August 31-September 4, all public schools in your districts will receive a class-set of 32 hard-cover copies each of The Massachusetts Chronicles, a new history book that captures key moments in the commonwealth’s history. Also included is a 12-foot-long laminated timeline of the state’s history and a curriculum-mapped Educator’s Guide.
The Massachusetts Chronicles is a collaborative effort of Bridgewater State University, Plymouth Public Schools, Plymouth 400, and publisher What on Earth Books, to produce a first-ever history that will create a greater appreciation for our state’s rich and impactful past and prepare our K-12 students for the responsibilities of citizenship. Created as a living legacy of the Plymouth 400 commemoration, The Massachusetts Chronicles also weaves in the perspectives and stories of the indigenous peoples to create a more accurate and inclusive history.
As Governor Charlie Baker has said of the Massachusetts Chronicles, “These stories, written from all perspectives, are designed to educate our students and strengthen our sense of community as we look ahead to the future.”
As a result of the generosity of Bridgewater State University benefactors, Bruce and Patricia Bartlett, more than 60,000 copies of The Massachusetts Chronicles are being distributed to all 1,854 public schools across the commonwealth at no cost.
The book contains more than 60 newspaper-style articles that vividly capture key moments encompassing six themes in the state’s history – commerce, culture, conflict, politics, science and sport – while providing a current perspective on the events of the past.
Each school in your district will also receive a printed educator’s guide, developed by educators from the Plymouth School District and faculty from Bridgewater State University, which maps creative classroom activities to state standards, and a 12-foot, 100-moment laminated timeline. The timeline features a series of embedded QR codes that will transport the reader to playlists of student-created videos that tell Massachusetts stories in their own voices. Seven micro-credentials for teachers focused on the study of civics and indigenous peoples have been developed and will be delivered by BSU.
You may preview the book and begin using resources available to schools by visiting The Massachusetts Chronicles website.
Also, please mark your calendar for Wednesday, September 9 for “Teaching Massachusetts State History.” A professional development workshop will be available to teachers throughout the state to assist them in using The Massachusetts Chronicles resources. Additional information about this event is forthcoming.
We are grateful for your assistance in apprising the schools in your district of the availability of these resources We trust that students across the commonwealth stand to gain a comprehensive understanding of their state’s history with these resources and that they will further enrich the curricula of schools in your district for years to come.
Gary Maestas, Superintendent, Plymouth Public Schools
Frederick W. Clark Jr., President, Bridgewater State University
Michele Pecoraro, Executive Director, Plymouth 400