*Detailed student checklists, outlines, interview questions, peer evaluation templates included*
How real is the American Dream? Can it mean different things to different people? Is it rooted in equality or success? Is this dream truly attainable or simply a national myth? In this self-guided research project, students will attempt to answer these questions as they examine one of America’s oldest and most recognized aspirations. This will require them to investigate the historical and cultural conditions surrounding the first generation(s) of Americans in their family, connect those experiences with their own and research potential changes or threats to the American Dream of their future.
Part I-- PAST: drawing from formal and informal sources, students will research the immigration process of the generation in their family to first arrive in America. Explore and present the personal, legal, financial, cultural and political history of their experiences. 40%
Part II– PRESENT: go straight to the (primary) source and interview the oldest coherent relative in the family. Students will spend time asking thoughtful questions about their perspectives and experiences with the American Dream as they document and reflect on their responses. 25%
Part III– FUTURE: students consider their future with the American Dream. They will choose and research a topic that could significantly alter or influence their life or goals in the next 30 years and record their findings in a letter to their future self. 25%