Spotlight on Elementary Education

Oral histories and interviews are a unique form of historical documentation. This guide by Linda Shopes offers an overview of the various ways oral history can be integrated into classroom discussions. Though some of the techniques will have to be adapted for elementary students, the ideas Shopes presents are extremely useful. FIND OUT MORE »

Example of Historical Thinking

Scholars, students, and teachers model historical thinking
Primary Sources as Windows into the Past
Photo, Is Anybody Home?, 2006, Pink Sherbet Photography, D Sharon Pruitt, Flickr

Excite students by introducing them to primary sources that answer questions [...] »

1853 Daguerreotype

What does an 1853 daguerreotype have to say? Plenty, says Frank Goodyear, [...] »

Letters from the Philippines

Letters from U.S. soldiers during the Philippine-American War reveal [...] »

An Introduction to Historical Thinking and Reading
Photo, [Old hermit Roy Ozmer. . . ], 1957, Flickr Commons

Watch this flash movie for a peek at how historians read and question [...] »

Women's Suffrage: Jane Addams's Article

Who was Jane Addams, and how is her article "Why Women Should Vote" still [...] »

Teaching in Action

Teachers demonstrate promising teaching practices
The Assassination of Abraham Lincoln

Teacher Bill Kendrat demonstrates the techniques he uses to draw students in [...] »

Exploring Historical Texts in a Discussion-Based Class

Trying to promote more productive and engaging discussions?

[...] »

Using Primary Sources

Strategies for analyzing primary sources
SCIM-C: Historical Source Analysis
Photo, ". . . Texas-New Mexico Pipeline Company. . . ," 1972, Hiser, Flickr

Virginia Tech’s short video shows how to analyze primary sources and put [...] »

Local History and Student Historians

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

Teaching with Textbooks

Techniques for promoting historical inquiry
The Grammar of History Textbooks Part II: Questioning the Text
Marginalia, CHNM

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

Children’s Voices from the Civil War
Negative, "Sgt. John Clem, U.S.A.," 1855-1865, Library of Congress

Help students identify with the past via children who lived through the [...] »

Building a Conversation between Textbooks, Students, and Teachers

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

Learning Menus: Textbooks a la Carte

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

Opening Up the Textbook
Negative, "Schoolroom. Concho, Arizona," Russell Lee, Oct. 1940, LoC

Make the most of your textbook—engage students in close reading and analysis [...] »