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Flow of History

Photo, This Native of Randolph. . . , 1974, Cooper, Flickr Commons
The Grant

The Flow of History links the local histories of the Connecticut River watershed in Vermont and New Hampshire to the greater national narrative. Active since 2004, the project has a sizable digital presence, offering "book discussions, primary source workshops, and summer institutes to teachers focused on a yearly theme" each year.

Due in part to its longevity, this grant project has produced many digital resources which can be used as they are or as organizational models for current and upcoming professional development programming throughout the country.

Project Management

Perhaps surprisingly, the newsletters are a resource worth exploring, particularly for local educators or simply as an example of how a newsletter can be a useful resource. Each newsletter includes focus questions (which are also addressed with a page or so of text), a timeline, primary source questions, and a suggested unit framework—the latter of which includes suggested reading for children and adults, as well as state standards. These newsletters remind educators that there is a reason to participate in the programming and to constantly consider how what they learn can be implemented in individual classrooms.

The newsletters are a resource worth exploring as an example of how a newsletter can be a useful resource.

Project managers should also view the annual participant wikis. These describe the expectations and plans for each day of the grant programming's sessions, a participative curricula creation page, stipend information, and information on the upcoming field opportunities. These provide a clear statement of the intentions and activities of the overall grant program, and suggest organized management— which in turn suggests to educators that their participation will be a worthwhile investment of time.

Educator Resources

If the project management products are not sufficient, there are resources for educators as well.

First, there are toolkits. These may include unit frameworks (main questions, standards of learning, and more), informational essays, timelines, sample lessons, online interactives, and recommended reading. The units are early settlement, westward expansion, industrialization, citizenship, and the Civil War.

The Flow of History also operates several small websites. Doing History describes resources which can be found at local institutions—historical societies, town offices, courthouses, and cemeteries—and how those resources can be put to use in the classroom. Journey to Alder Gulch describes high school classes' (in Montana and in New Hampshire) efforts to piece together the history of the Mitchell family on their journey westward.


Barre Supervisory Union, Southeast Vermont Learning Collaborative, Vermont Historical Society, Windham Southeast Supervisory Union