Posts Categorized: For Educators

For Educators: Primary vs. Secondary Documents in Puerto Rico History

An important distinction in historical research is the difference between primary and secondary sources. Puerto Rico makes an excellent study for this topic. There are many misconceptions and disagreements about the history of Puerto Rico. Challenge students to choose a topic on which people now disagree, and track down primary sources that can help distinguish… Read more »

Understanding Puerto Rico: Classroom Discussion Questions – History

In our continuing series of classroom discussion questions, we examine the history of Puerto Rico, particularly focusing on its political status. Q: When was Puerto Rico first inhabited? A: Puerto Rico was inhabited by the Taino people perhaps as early as 900 BC. Q: When was Puerto Rico first visited by Europeans? A: Columbus landed… Read more »

Puerto Rico in National Hispanic Heritage Month

National Hispanic Heritage Month begins September 15 and continues to October 15. Across the country, classrooms will build piñatas, learn a few words of Spanish, and study some individuals from Spanish-speaking countries. Before Hurricane Maria, 25 freshmen in a Midwestern college classroom were asked about Puerto Rico’s government. One student knew that Puerto Rico is… Read more »

What Does It Mean to Be a Territory of the United States?

Puerto Rico is a territory of the United States… but just what does it mean to be a territory? The United States formed as a union of 13 British colonies which banded together as a group of individual states. Each state saw itself as distinct from the others, and all were nervous about having the… Read more »

Understanding Puerto Rico: Classroom Discussion Questions

Puerto Rico Report is frequently consulted by academic researchers and students in many States as well as in Puerto Rico. In response to requests from some of these users, it is now publishing discussion questions and documents which could be used in the classroom to understand Puerto Rico’s political status and history. The following includes… Read more »

The Truth Behind the Boycott over “Commonwealth”

Much has been written about the boycott of the 2017 plebiscite by Puerto Rico’s second-largest political party, the Popular Democratic Party (PPD, for its acronym in Spanish). Yet not much is said about the reasons used to justify the boycott in the first place. To answer this question, a chronological review is in order. This… Read more »

Puerto Rico Debt Syllabus

The Puerto Rico Debt Syllabus is collection of links to articles, websites, and multimedia on Puerto Rico’s debt crisis. It was recently launched by the Unpayable Debt Working Group.It constitutes an impressive storehouse of references for teachers of geography, economics, digital literacy, and critical thinking. The resources are divided into six groupings: HISTORICAL CONTEXT THE… Read more »

“PROMESA” Floor Debate Makes a Great Civics Lesson

The current polarization of the two major political parties in the United States can make it hard to get across the idea of bipartisan cooperation in Congress to students. For college or high school classrooms — or for stepping up dinner table conversations — the floor debate on PROMESA makes a great lesson. So pull… Read more »

Puerto Rico’s Status Resource Roundup

Puerto Rico Report provides comprehensive coverage of news about Puerto Rico’s status, including both breaking news on relevant events in Puerto Rico and on the U.S. mainland, and discussion of legal, historical, and educational issues related to Puerto Rico’s status. There are other websites that often include information on the subject, but which have a… Read more »

For Students and Educators: Puerto Rico in the News

It’s hard for students to be able to judge the value of a source. Help your class with critical reading skills and digital citizenship as well by examining an online article. James Glassman wrote an article called, “The Right Medicine for Ailing Puerto Rico.” This article discusses two laws: Chapter 9, a part of U.S…. Read more »