Teachers learn to teach history through children's literature with author Andrea Pinkney.

"This institute was, by far, the best I have ever attended in all my years of teaching.” — Boston Public School teacher

The Department of Education and Public Programs of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum provides professional development opportunities for elementary and secondary school educators.

These offerings range from day-long conferences to two-week institutes and take place throughout the year. Programs combine opportunities to interact with leaders in the fields of history, public affairs and politics with creative teaching tools and primary source materials.


We'll Never Turn Back: Voices of the Civil Rights Movement
A Conference for classroom teachers and school librarians of grades 3-8
March 7, 2013: 8:30am - 3:00pm

Our program features remarkable individuals who played a part in the fight for civil rights during the 1960s, as well as award-winning authors who have brought this pivotal chapter in American history to life for young readers. Join us to consider how their stories can be used to inspire students to speak out against intolerance and injustice in today's world.

Conference brochure (full size for online viewing) - pdf
Conference brochure (8.5 x 11 for printing) - pdf


Map of Soviet military build up

Facing Armageddon: New Perspectives on the US, Soviet, and Cuban Leadership Fifty Years After the Cuban Missile Crisis
October 1, 2012 4:00 PM - 7:00 PM

This special program for educators spotlights the 50th Anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis and its significance for today's youth. Leading experts on the Crisis will discuss not only the tumultuous thirteen days as experienced by Kennedy, Khrushchev and Castro, but also the November Crisis stemming from the highly-charged negotiations between Moscow and Havana as the Soviets secretly planned to leave behind more than 100 Soviet tactical nuclear weapons, then reversed themselves as a result of Fidel Castro’s aggressively defiant behavior.

More info


Crossing Borders

Crossing Borders
Through Literature, Poetry and Personal Stories

April 7, 2011

Learn more about this one-day conference for teachers of grades 3 - 8 and school librarians that was held on April 7, 2011. Access an annotated bibliography and Peace Corps resources for teachers, and listen to excerpts from a panel discussion with award-winning authors Alma Flor Ada, Naomi Shihab Nye, Linda Sue Park, and James Rumford.


JFK with Civil Rights Leaders

The Presidency and Civil Rights
February 20, 2012

This conference examined key moments in the civil rights movement during five American presidencies – from Roosevelt to Johnson – with a final panel examining contemporary civil rights struggles in the years after the signing of the Civil Rights Act. Watch videos of all four panels and learn more here.


Jane Pauley and Tom Brokaw

 Kennedy Library Forums

Our free public forums are often tied to history and civics curricula. Teachers and students are welcome to attend. Click the link above to make reservations for upcoming forums or to see videos and read transcripts of past forums.