December 13, 2017

Teaching Now: Using Primary Sources with 21st-Century Learners

This is a guest post from veteran teacher Heather Klos, an 8th grade U.S. history teacher and the Social Studies department chair at Crownover Middle School in Corinth, Texas. As an early American history teacher, I know it is important to use primary sources effectively with my 8th grade students.  Analyzing primary sources can be very difficult for students, but it is usually my end-game when working with these documents.  I have found that breaking down the documents into manageable chunks … [Read more...]

Teaching Now: Integrating Literacy, History & Geography

Informed citizens have knowledge and understanding of geography and history (see the College, Career & Civic C3 Framework). This is a guest post from Nicole Woulfe, a middle school social studies teacher from New Hampshire and a Citizen U pilot lesson implementer. I created the Geography & the Civil War lesson to allow my students to grow as geographers as we studied the Civil War. So often, students are overwhelmed by the dates of battles, the number of casualties, and the famous names … [Read more...]

Teaching Now: Zooming In on the Benefits of Primary Source Analysis Using Google Forms

This is a guest post from Alissa Oginsky, a museum educator and 6th-grade history teacher at Holmes Middle School in Alexandria, Virginia. Teachers are always on the hunt for new and exciting ways for students to exercise their critical and creative thinking skills. The journey, in fact, never seems to stop! Like many history teachers who have projected, printed, hidden parts of, and even cut up primary source images, I have seen the incredible power primary sources offer by giving students … [Read more...]

Teaching Now: Going Gaga Over Suffrage

This is a guest post from veteran educator Carrie Veatch, who has a special interest in inquiry learning and primary sources and is a member of the Library of Congress Teaching with Primary Sources Mentor Advisory Group. While studying the women’s suffrage movement I decided to mix Library of Congress primary sources with pop culture to capture my students’ attention and lead them on a creative exercise in inquiry, I have to admit, after seeing Soomo Publishing’s parody video production of We … [Read more...]

Teaching Now: Deep Image Analysis

This is a guest post from Kerry Gallagher, a Technology Integration Specialist at St. John's Prep, a 1:1 iPad school serving grades 6-12, and former middle and high school history teacher. Most history educators strive to make the past relevant to the present lives of their students. Deep image analysis, as a part of the broader study of history and primary sources, can really draw students into the time and place they are studying. Images that are photographed or created by the people who … [Read more...]

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...]

Teaching Now: Analyzing Primary Sources for Scientific Thinking & Organization

This is a guest post from Tom Bober (a.k.a. @CaptainLibrary), an elementary librarian at RM Captain Elementary in Clayton, Missouri and frequent contributor to the TPS Teachers Network. Earlier this school year I wrote about an activity in which third grade students analyzed primary sources from the Library of Congress, specifically the notes, diagrams, and writings of scientists to explore how scientists organize information. The hope was that students would connect these organizational … [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: Using the Primary Source Analysis Tool

This is a guest post from Barbara Evans, a middle school language arts teacher at Holden Elementary in Chicago, Illinois. After working with TPS-Barat during the past year as part of the Chicago Public Schools Social Science Academy, I was excited to use primary sources in our literature studies. The primary source analysis tool is a great resource that I decided to tweak to meet the needs of my students. As you can see from the photo above, I changed the column headers from Observe, Reflect … [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...]