May 30, 2017

Teaching Now: Predicting & Inferring with Primary Sources & Literature

This is a guest post from elementary teacher and adjunct university instructor Kimberly Heckart, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. “I developed the Predict and Infer strategy to help students develop historical comprehension skills while comparing, contrasting, and evaluating information from primary sources related to a particular time period. This strategy motivates students to predict the relevance and meanings of sources and then discover information that will help them make sense of the sources while … [Read more...]

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...]

Finding Resources: TPS Journal

Dig deep into a variety of teaching with primary sources topics. The TPS Journal, formerly titled the TPS Quarterly, is an online, peer-reviewed publication focused on pedagogical approaches to teaching with Library of Congress digitized primary sources in K-12 classrooms. Each issue provides sections related to the issue's thematic focus: a feature article, an elementary primary source activity, a secondary primary source activity, a teacher spotlight highlighting primary source learning in the … [Read more...]

Featured Source: Astor Theatre – The Great Ziegfeld

Where do you think this photograph was taken? Zoom into the photo and describe this place using details from the image to inform your description. (Save the link in the previous sentence to download the image to your computer which will allow you to zoom in with greater detail.) Next, make a guess at what decade this photo is from and describe what you think life was like at this time. Review the bibliographic record for this primary source. Then do some research and find out what this … [Read more...]

Featured Source: What do you hear?

Listen carefully to this audio recording. You will hear six different sounds. What do you hear? Where do you think this audio recording was made? Why do you think that? What questions do you have about this audio recording? Now listen to the full audio recording, then find out who made this primary source audio recording (be sure to scroll down to read the notes). Were you surprised by what you heard and learned? Why or why not? What further questions do you have about this audio … [Read more...]

Learning from the Source: Geographical conversation cards

Use these geographical conversation cards to learn about the geographical history of the United States as well as learn state facts. Lesson prep 1. Print out and cut up state cards and the Question and Answer cards. 2. Separate these into 5  groups of state cards and their accompanying Q&A cards. Because there are missing cards (AR, KY, NC, NJ, OH), some groups will be missing Q&A cards; be sure that each group has at least one state card with missing Q&A cards. 3. … [Read more...]

Analyzing Primary Sources Using Question Cubes

If your students need help with asking questions when analyzing primary sources, bring out the question cubes. You can make them from paper or cleaned-out school milk cartons. Each student or student group should get two cubes (see image directly above and below) and roll both to help get those questions flowing. You can also create your own cubes with various phrases or sentence stems. Download the question cube templates and let us know what works for you and your … [Read more...]

Learning from the Source: Presidential Portraits

George Washington and Abraham Lincoln are two of the most famous U.S. presidents. This project helps students to learn about these presidents through the lens of both primary and secondary sources. Students will also investigate different types of primary sources, learn how portraits are created to convey information, and consider their own presidential potential. To complete this project, students will . . . identify various types of primary sources. learn facts about George Washington … [Read more...]

Learning from the Source: Abraham Lincoln & Me Activity Book

Students are active learners when they are engaged in real activities. The Abraham Lincoln & Me Primary Source Activity Book enables students to become familiar with primary sources and learn about Abraham Lincoln and his accomplishments while fostering a personal connection to this U.S. president. The activity book is available in English and Spanish with accompanying audio files in each language. Numerous extension activity ideas provide teachers with options for extending … [Read more...]

Primary Source Learning: America’s Library

The Teaching with the Library of Congress blog provides an overview of the resources found in America's Library and some great teaching ideas for using the website with younger students or older English language learners. For more involved projects, click the links below to access two primary source projects using America's Library resources from TPS-Barat. Each project includes all student materials as well as a teacher instructions. Presidential Portraits George Washington and Abraham … [Read more...]