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Supplemental Materials

Supplemental Materials include images, maps, graphic organizers, an online lesson, links to resources on other sites, and a list of recommended print resources.

Videos

Choices produces videos featuring top experts—professors, policymakers, journalists, activists, and artists—answering questions that complement the readings and lessons.

Mexico

Between Two Worlds: Mexico at the Crossroads

Tenth edition. May 2015.

Overview

Mexico has undergone a dramatic transformation in the last twenty years. The end of one-party rule, an effort to embrace globalization, and the growth of the drug trade have led to profound changes in Mexican society. Mexico's historical experience and unique cultural heritage continue to shape and inform Mexican society. Between Two Worlds: Mexico at the Crossroads brings Mexico's national identity and history into sharper focus for high school students. Students are asked to see the world from the perspective of Mexican citizens and to consider current issues Mexico faces in the areas of economic development, political reform, and foreign relations.

Readings

Part I of the reading traces the history of Mexico from early indigenous societies through Spanish conquest until independence. Part II provides an overview of the changes Mexico underwent after gaining independence, including political revolution and economic transformation. Part III explores the most pressing public policy challenges facing Mexico today.

The Choices Role Play

This activity is a simulation in which students deliberate three options for Mexican policy. Each option is grounded in a clearly defined philosophy about the challenges Mexico faces and a vision for the country's future, and each offers recommendations on fundamental Mexican public policy issues. By exploring this spectrum of alternatives, students gain a deeper understanding of the values and beliefs underlying specific policy recommendations and the trade-offs that accompany them. Ultimately, students are prepared to develop their own policy options.

Lessons

The Aztec-Spanish Encounter
By analyzing primary source accounts of the encounter between the Spanish and the Aztecs, students learn to detect bias and evaluate source reliability.

Political Geography of North America
Using Readings maps, students explore how the political geography of North America has changed since the colonial period and draw connections between geography and history.

History in Mexican Textbooks
Students analyze the role of politics in defining history by comparing the historical interpretations of two Mexican history textbooks.

Expressing Political Views through Art
Students explore the styles and techniques of Mexican street artists. Students have the opportunity to draw sketches of their own murals, conveying the hopes and concerns of fictional characters.

The Options Role Play
Students examine three options for Mexico's future in a role play. They use their knowledge of Mexico's history and current challenges to present arguments about who is responsible for Mexico's problems; how crime, violence, corruption, and inequality should be addressed; how the United States should be perceived; and what the role of the central government should be in building Mexico's future.

Mexico's Economic Future
Armed with an understanding of Mexican history from a Mexican perspective, students develop a coherent policy program for Mexico and articulate recommendations on pressing political and economic issues.

Assessing Political Values
Students assess the revolutionary rhetoric of the Zapatistas and explore competing values in contemporary Mexico.

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