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The Middle East: The Center of History from 1800 the the Present – IND. STUDY


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A region as old as history itself, the culture, art, literature, and Middle East have captured the
world’s imagination for thousands of years. Sitting at the nexus of Africa, Asia, and Europe, the
Middle East has played a pivotal role in world history and knowing this region’s past is vitally
important to understanding the modern world. This course is perfect for students who might like
to learn more about the general history of the Middle East, explore a specific topic historical
topic such as Napoleon’s invasion of Europe or Middle Eastern literature, or research modern
political policies concerning this region.

In this course, students will complete a research paper over a topic of his or her choosing; the
length and scope of the paper will be commensurate with the student’s experience level. Topics
must be chosen by Week 3 of the semester. In addition, the student will complete several reading
assignments and short reading responses over these readings. The student is required to meet
with the teacher 3 times throughout the semester.


Please view prerequisites below.

NOTE: Please contact the teacher to discuss your ideas for the independent study before registering.

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Everything Sad is Untrue by Daniel Nayeri ISBN: 1646142721

More books will be listed soon; please contact the teacher with questions.


Claire Pattonenjoys teaching history and various electives for middle school and high-school students. Her classes combine detailed lectures about the history, art, literature, religion, and politics with dynamic in-class discussions about important sources from the era. Claire is passionate about showing students why the past matters to the present and how the past affects them today. She realizes that when students leave her classroom, they may not remember every detail about the Balfour declaration, but she seeks to teach every student how to find information, read and understand primary sources, interrogate data, and communicate well. Mrs. Patton values an active learning environment. Rather than just reading from a textbook, Mrs. Patton teaches students how to understand the material they read, synthesize material from multiple sources, and summarize those items effectively.  Rather than question such as “What color were the curtains in Chapter 5?” Mrs. Patton loves asking questions that help students work through the broader themes of the text and show how people of the past viewed their world and the situations they lived through.

Claire holds a Master of Public History and a Bachelors of History from Oklahoma State University. During her masters, she worked as a teaching assistant and she has independently taught a research writing intensive seminar for upper high-school students. Claire’s scholarly work focuses on women in the west from 1875 to 1945. Past projects include cleanliness and clothing in the Dust Bowl, the women’s Navy auxiliary service in World War 2, and clothing on the American frontier. She has extensive experience working in museums, setting up exhibits, and interacting with the public. During the summer of 2022 she worked at the National Cowboy Hall of Fame and Western Heritage Museum as an intern in the curatorial and education departments. Claire has published in Forma Journal (Summer 2021) and currently has a scholarly article out for review at the Western Historical Quarterly. She has presented at numerous academic conferences, including the American Historical Association.

Claire also enjoys teaching sewing to friends both young and old. She began sewing when she was nine and hasn’t let off the foot pedal yet! Claire loves to design her own clothes and bring her creations to life. She took this love into her scholarly work and as a part of her master’s thesis, Claire conducted extensive research and then recreated an original 1875-1885 dress held in the National Cowboy and Western History Museum.

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