September 12, 2022

Teaching Now: Separating Myths from History

This unit plan and teaching guide was developed by Dr. John Bickford, Professor of Social Studies/History Education at Eastern Illinois University and Editor-in-Chief of The Councilor: A Journal of the Social Studies, in collaboration with Citizen U. It presents a lesson plan with teaching notes targeted to early and upper elementary students. TEACHER BACKGROUND Children—and adults!—will be shocked to learn most of their Thanksgiving facts are fables, not history. This short section … [Read more...]

Primary Source Learning: The Wampanoag, the Plimoth Colonists & the First Thanksgiving

This primary source set is targeted to elementary students and includes background information and thinking prompts. It was curated mainly by Dr. John Bickford, Professor of Social Studies/History Education at Eastern Illinois University and Editor-in-Chief of The Councilor: A Journal of the Social Studies, with the goal of helping students separate Thanksgiving myths from history. This set is also available as a Google document; get it here. Access the teaching guide for this source … [Read more...]

Featured Source: Thanksgiving page Nov. 24, 1916

The Leavenworth Echo. (Leavenworth, Wash.), 24 Nov. 1916. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. Articles (Click the page image above to zoom in and read the articles or open this .pdf document.) The Nation's Thanksgiving New York "Kids" on Thanksgiving A Happy Thanksgiving Song of the Glad Folks … [Read more...]

Primary Source Spotlight: Wampanoag

The Wampanoag the tribe in Massachusetts is famous for having helped the people we call Pilgrims when they first came to America. Learn more by clicking through to the links below. Images Wampanoag image set Massasoit and his warriors Massasoit--On his way to meet the Pilgrims and sign the Peace Treaty Goffe rallying the men of Hadley [in defense of Indian attack during King Philip's War, Hadley, Mass., 1675-76] Historical newspaper coverage Massasoit … [Read more...]

Guided Primary Source Analysis: A Preacher Tries Farming

The page shown above comes from a transcript of a 1930s oral history interview with George Strester who remembers a memorable Thanksgiving time when his father, a preacher, tried farming in Nebraska in 1873. Click the links below to browse through some related images, then read Strester's whole story. Describe how the images enhanced your understanding of the story. young family, near Woods Park, Custer County, Nebraska sod house near Woods Park, Custer County, Nebraska Mrs. Debusk, … [Read more...]

Featured Source: A Few of the Things for Which We Are Thankful, Also Unthankful

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Primary Source Spotlight: Football

This primary source spotlight shines a light on the sport of American football. Spinner Play, lithograph by American artist Benton Spruance - guided primary source analysis activities Football images Football films President Roosevelt at the Army-Navy game 1902 Princeton and Yale football game 1903 Chicago-Michigan football game 1903 Sports Byline USA radio program football audio recordings Jim Brown 08-15-2002 John Elway 01-24-2003 Archie Griffin 06-25-1993 … [Read more...]

Guided Primary Source Analysis: Thanksgiving Shopping Insert

Zoom into this newspaper page online or download a larger image. Use the shopping insert to help craft a Thanksgiving menu. What would you serve based on the items offered for sale? Look closely at the illustrations surrounding the advertisements. Add speech bubbles to bring the scene depicted at the top of the page to life. Compare and contrast this Thanksgiving shopping insert with other 1914 inserts from around the country. What similarities do you notice? What differences do you … [Read more...]

Today in History: Thanksgiving

Today in History–November 26–the Library of Congress features Thanksgiving, designated by President George Washington on this date in 1789. Seventy-four years later, in 1863, Abraham Lincoln issued a Thanksgiving Proclamation that declared the last Thursday in November national Thanksgiving Day. Learn more about U.S. Thanksgiving traditions by visiting the Today in History section, then click the links below to access more primary sources, secondary sources, and teaching … [Read more...]

Primary Source Spotlight: Holidays

Celebrate U.S. holidays with these primary source collections! And don't miss these holiday blog posts from Teaching with the Library of Congress. January New Year’s Day January 1 Martin Luther King, Jr. Day third Monday in January January/February Lunar New Years begins with the first new moon of the lunar calendar February Valentine's Day March St. Patrick's Day March/April Jewish Passover April April Fools' Day Easter first full moon after the March … [Read more...]