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The Spanish Civil War is a crucial event in twentieth-century world and U.S. history, and key for understanding the origins of World War II and the Holocaust. It offers a unique opportunity to introduce major historical, political, and cultural issues.   Read more

Teaching the Common Core with Primary Documents

teaching-common-core-primary-documentsALBA works with teachers in Social Studies, English Language Arts, and Spanish to design lesson plans based on compelling, accessible primary source documents -texts, images, audio- that will inspire student interest while meeting common core state standards in reading, writing, speaking & listening and media skills. Read more

The US and the Spanish Civil War: A Primer for Teachers and Students

10-minute version

40-minute version

See also: Powerpoint Introduction to the Spanish Civil War (40 min.)

Social Studies

teaching-common-core-primary-documentsFor teachers of Social Studies/History, the stories embedded in the primary source materials can provide links between U.S. History and World History and shed new light on the subjects that are already in the existing curricula: the impact of the Great Depression on the ideological tendencies of US citizens, totalitarian threats to democracy, the origins of World War II, …   Read more


teaching-common-core-primary-documentsFor teachers of Spanish, the history of the Spanish Civil War and the Lincoln Brigade offer a unique episode in the history of the links between the U.S., Spain and Latin America. ALBA’s materials help contextualize and bring to life the work of García Lorca, Neruda, Vallejo, Alberti, Sender, Picasso, and many others. Read more

English Language Arts

teaching-common-core-primary-documentsThe Spanish Civil War had a profound impact on fiction and non-fiction writers and intellectuals such as Ernest Hemingway, George Orwell, Virginia Woolf, Langston Hughes, Martha Gellhorn, and John Dos Passos, in addition to poets such as Edwin Rolfe, James Neugass, Stephen Spender, W.H. Auden, and Genevieve Taggart.   Read more

Bring an ALBA institute to your district

teaching-common-core-primary-documentsALBA Teaching Institutes educate highschool teachers of social studies, Spanish, art, and language arts on the use of primary documents and multimedia resources to convey the lessons learned from the American volunteers in the Spanish Civil War: progressivism, activism and human rights. Read more