December 1, 2020

Primary Source Learning: LOC.gov Teacher-Created Lesson Plans

The Teacher's section on LOC.gov features close to 100 teacher-created lesson plans. As you can see from the image above, lesson plans are listed in alphabetical order and there is a handy search bar to help you easily conduct a keyword search. Use the links below to jump to select groupings of the LOC.gov lesson plans and related PSN teaching resources. All lesson plans Lesson plans by grade level Elementary: Grades 3-5 Middle School: Grades 6-8 High school: Grades … [Read more...]

Guided Primary Source Analysis: Teamwork, Community, Culture

Look closely at the photo. What do you see? Do any of these items look familiar? What does this image make you think about or feel? What questions do you have? How has teamwork been a part of your life? Reflect on how being part of a team or group has helped shape your identity. Describe the culture and community of the team or group and the impact it has had on you. There are three games of soccer being played in the image above, as well as a “paletero” selling Mexican style popsicles. … [Read more...]

Teaching Now: Examining Social Justice Through Historical, Classic and Contemporary Sources

This is a guest post from Kasey Short, an eighth-grade English teacher at Charlotte Country Day school in North Carolina.  When I moved from 6th to 8th grade last year, one thing I thought about a lot was how I would approach teaching To Kill a Mockingbird. I knew that I wanted to provide historical context as well as the perspective of recent cases in which people of color have been unjustly found guilty. I also wanted to showcase the voices of people who had been wrongly accused and the … [Read more...]

Analyzing Primary Sources: Technology & Presidential Nominating Conventions

Political conventions have been part of the presidential nominating process for many years, but where conventions are held, who attends, and what happens at them has changed over time. First, analyze sources related to the Democratic Party's national conventions in 1928 and in 1960. What similarities do you see? What differences? In particular, look for evidence of differing technologies. How might changes in technology have affected the 1960 election? 1928 sources Official … [Read more...]

Guided Primary Source Analysis: Pulling Down the Statue

Take a close look at this image to notice small details as well as the bigger picture. Then fill out an Event Happenings worksheet. Next, review the complete work and the source record. What more did you learn? Now look closely at two more images of the same event; the first is a modified image of the first and the second is an entirely different image. Be sure to look closely. What do you learn from the images and source records? Compare and contrast the images as well as the information you … [Read more...]

Analyzing Primary Sources: Middle School (6-8) Image Analysis Choice Board

This choice board is targeted to students in grades 6-8 They may use images found in the home; in newspapers, magazines or books; on television (if there is a pause feature); or online to complete the activities and may write or record (audio or video) their responses. If students have online access, below are several links to a variety of image sets. You may allow them to browse and choose images or you may curate your own set for them to use. Subject primary sources Conservation & … [Read more...]

Timely Connections: Worldwide Health Crisis

As the world confronts global health problems such as epidemics or pandemics, involve your students in an authentic lesson that looks at past primary sources to increase understanding of health related issues. Encourage students to use past and current information and digital tools to research, make informed decisions and contribute to their own and their community’s health information. This lesson idea, which  also includes guiding questions, a curated set of historical primary sources, … [Read more...]

Guided Primary Source Analysis: Bonus Veterans

Carefully study the details of the Bonus Veterans photograph above. Brainstorm a list of questions you would need answered in order to write an article about this image. Share your questions with an elbow partner, then investigate this primary source image set to see what questions you were able to answer. Write a brief summary of what you learned. Work in groups to review the Washington, D.C. Evening Star coverage of the "Bonus Army" (see links below). Read the headlines and first couple of … [Read more...]

Guided Primary Source Analysis: Shrinking Glaciers

Zoom into the map and analyze it, creating a bulleted list of what you learned from your analysis and another list of any questions that you have; click the image above to access the source record. Use the scale to trace a 1-mile square grid over the image portion of the map. Use the grid to determine a rough estimate of the number of square miles of glacier coverage, jotting down the number. Then create a square-mile grid for this timelapse map to determine rough estimates of the number of … [Read more...]