December 15, 2017

Analyzing Primary Sources: Elementary Image & Text Analysis Sheets

Primary sources engage all students—elementary, middle and high school. Below are some worksheets to help elementary students, in particular, to analyze primary source images and texts. These worksheets were created by TPS-Barat and master teacher Kimberly Heckart, who teaches third grade at Prairie Ridge Elementary in Cedar Rapids, Iowa and Elementary Social Studies Methods at the University of Iowa. Kim whose accolades include Elementary Social Studies Teacher of the Year for both the Iowa and … [Read more...]

Learning from the Source: The Negro Speaks of Rivers

Lesson overview Writer and poet Langston Hughes was a prominent figure in the Harlem Renaissance movement, famous for his illuminating and moving depictions of African American life. "The Negro Speaks of Rivers" was Hughes's first published poem, appearing in the June 1921 issue of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) magazine The Crisis. Since that time, the poem has been set to music repeatedly, as shown by the sheet music illustrating this post. Lesson … [Read more...]

Featured Source: Official Program Woman Suffrage Procession

Review the Official Program Woman Suffrage Procession and read the program forward (page 3). What goals for the procession does the forward set? How do the accomplishments of the highlighted women on pages 3 and 4 seem to support those goals? Closely read the first 11 paragraphs of page 4: Why Women Want to Vote. What is the tone of the text? What specific words and phrases support your conclusion? What group of women do you think was the primary audience for this text? What specific words … [Read more...]

Teaching Now: Determining the Main Idea of a Text

This is a guest post from Glenn Jensen, a national board certified U.S. and world history teacher at Kennedy High School in Chicago, Illinois. Glenn has developed an exercise that is a great way to begin analyzing primary source texts because it has students focus on what they know, what they can extrapolate from that knowledge, and how they can apply that knowledge to their own lives. Below he describes how he recently implemented the text analysis with his students; the activity, which meets … [Read more...]

Teaching Now: Scaffolding Primary Source Learning

This is a guest post from George Mueller, a high school U.S. history and world studies teacher at Dunbar Vocational Academy in Chicago, Illinois. As part of the CPS Social Science Academy, we were tasked with developing and implementing a lesson using primary sources from the Library of Congress. The TPS-Barat Primary Source Nexus has so many resources and is easy to use so that's where I started. I wanted something that related to Chicago and related to my students. So when I found the primary … [Read more...]

Learning from the Source: Close Reading in Service of a Cause

Activity overview Close reading is an opportunity to read and reread thoughtfully and with purpose. By breaking down the analysis of texts and other primary sources into distinct chunks, you can increase rigor and help students more easily climb the staircase of complexity required by the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). In this primary source activity students will look closely and critically at images in conjunction with historical and contemporary texts. They will compare and contrast … [Read more...]

Connecting to the Common Core: Close Reading Markup Strategies

The plan today had been to post a CCSS-aligned primary source activity focused on close reading of images and texts but input from a great group of teachers at a professional development session necessitated a blog detour. So, instead, we'll share a close reading markup strategy remix and resource list that TPS-Barat put together for another recent PD session. Keep in mind that close reading strategies can be used to dive deep into texts as well as a variety of other primary source types. What … [Read more...]

Today in History: John Jay

Today in History–December 12–the Library of Congress features founding father John Jay, born on this day in 1745. Jay had a long, full political career including president of the Continental Congress, author of several Federalist Papers, and first Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court. Learn more about John Jay by visiting the Today in History section, then click the links below to access related primary sources. John Jay, One of the Nation's Founding Fathers, Was Born from … [Read more...]

Connecting to the Common Core: Close Observation & Purposeful Questions

The Teaching with the Library of Congress blog provides several ideas for inspring close observation and engaging students with primary sources, including having students make personal connections to an item, look for clues to time period and authorship, look for details that provide evidence of their thinking, and ask purposeful questions. Close observation of images is great practice for close reading of text, a strategy emphasized in the Common Core State Standards, in particular CCSS reading … [Read more...]