Assimilation and Acculturation: What Does It Mean To Be An American?

In this lesson students will evaluate the term, “What Does It Mean to Be An American?,” and develop an evaluatory conclusion as to the extent, or lack thereof, of acculturation and/or assimilation required to be considered an “American.” Furthermore, students will discuss whether “becoming American” is the “goal” of all ethnic groups (“assimilation” vs. “acculturation”) and evaluate the state of multiculturalism in America today. Students will employ the Michael Walzer article, “What Does It Mean to Be An American?” (1990), primary and secondary source data from the BCLHP, and research from the PEW Research Center, June 2015.

Created By: Chris Barnes, Longmont High School