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Best Practices

Maps are excellent primary and secondary sources that provide us with a rich variety of information. Ensure you students have the skills to properly read and interpret maps by introducing them to the basic concepts discussed on this website early and often. FIND OUT MORE »

Read and Learn

Examples of Historical Thinking

Scholars, students, and teachers model historical thinking

Watch J. Douglas Smith discuss the Massive Resistance policy enacted by U.S. [...] »

Portrait of Bill Tatnall playing the guitar during a 1935 recording expedition

Written primary sources only tell you so much. To learn about history that was [...] »

What do these letters from a women's rights activist reveal about social causes [...] »

How did the women's suffrage movement use the rise of journalism to its [...] »

Stephen Decatur and his men retaking the USS Philadelphia

Two letters from 1800 Tripoli lead into a story of piracy, privateering, [...] »

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Teaching in Action

Teachers demonstrate promising teaching practices

Screencapture, Mart McKenzie's classroom

Introducing your students to primary sources for the first time? Watch fourth- [...] »

Students learing about the Bill of Rights. MCPS TAH

Daunted by teaching the Bill of Rights and its complex vocabulary to students? [...] »

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Using Primary Sources

Strategies for analyzing primary sources

Watercolor, "Ou présente à signer. . . ," Claude Louis Desrais, 1783?, LoC

The National History Day’s guidelines for defining and locating primary sources. [...] »

Photo. Illumination Ceremony at dawn. Flickr

So you don't live near Gettysburg or the Alamo—can you still teach with [...] »

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Teaching with Textbooks

Techniques for promoting historical inquiry

Marginalia, CHNM

Turn your textbook into a conversation by scanning its language for biases. [...] »

Marginalia, CHNM

Show your students how to challenge the authority gap between the textbook and [...] »

Poster, Williams, Brown & Earle, Inc., Grown Ups Enjoy Reading, Also., NYPL

Class discussion and personal inquiry builds an interactive relationship [...] »

Photography, Cooking with Kids class, 25 Jan 2008, Penn State, Flickr CC

Turn your students into 'master chefs' by using learning menus that allow [...] »

Marginalia, CHNM

The language of history textbooks challenges English language learners and [...] »

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