Washington State Latinx History Unit Plan


This file is the Unit Plan ONLY for the Washington State Latinx History unit. It does not include individual lesson plans or materials. To purchase the complete unit, click here.

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Dr. Yesenia Navarette Hunter, Heritage University

Dr. Gonzalo Guzmán, Macalester College

Dr. Josué Estrada, Central Washington University

Savannah Garcia, K–12 Educator

Despite the political and racist rhetoric surrounding recent migration/immigration from Mexico and other parts of Latin America, Latinos are hardly newcomers to Washington State and the Pacific Northwest (PNW).  They are, in fact, among the oldest, largest, and fastest growing ethnic communities in the region. This unit will examine the contour of their history and other key socio-economic experiences from 1774 until the present. This unit is a historical introduction to the Latina/é/o/x experience in Washington State.

The unit begins with four lessons (LP1-LP4) focused on the history of the Latina/é/o/x communities in Washington State. Said lessons locate the first Latinos in the region using a historical outline of the early 18th and 19th centuries. Next, the course shifts its focus to examine the complex and persistent theme of 20th century migration and immigration of transnational labor flows into Oregon, Washington, and Idaho. The last section looks at the social and political establishment and development of post-WWII rural and urban Latino communities in Eastern and Western Washington. The unit closes with a brief discussion of racial, ethnic, and gender identities as well as other selected contemporary socio-economic and political challenges important to 21st-century PNW Latinos.

The following three lessons (LP5-LP7) unpack and further develop the themes and concepts introduced in the historical overview of the Latinx community in Washington State with an emphasis on introducing students to the field of Latinx Studies. The final three lessons (LP8-LP10) focus on civic engagement, political activism, and advocacy of the Latinx community in Washington State with a focus on the modern era.


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