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Best Practices

Maps can be crucial to understanding historical culture. Watch 4th grade teacher Stacy Hoeflich assist her students with the analysis of John Smith's 1612 map of Virginia and discover how maps can effectively be used as keys to decoding mysteries about the past. FIND OUT MORE »

Read and Learn

Examples of Historical Thinking

Scholars, students, and teachers model historical thinking

1804 inventory listing possessions of Thomas Springer of Delaware

What can an inventory tell you about daily life in Delaware in 1804? Curator [...] »

What do these letters from a women's rights activist reveal about social causes [...] »

Harriet Tubman (left) and her family

Can you trust a biography? Historian Tiya Miles analyzes an 1869 biography of [...] »

Photo, Baseball game, Manzanar Relocation Center, Calif., 1945, Ansel Adams, LoC

If the U.S. interned you and your family, how would you respond? [...] »

Portrait of Bill Tatnall playing the guitar during a 1935 recording expedition

Written primary sources only tell you so much. To learn about history that was [...] »

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Teaching in Action

Teachers demonstrate promising teaching practices

Photo, An impatient domino. Flickr

The fictional Alphonse the Camel provides insight for one classroom. [...] »

Photo, "Rural school girl. . . ," John Vachon, April 1943, LoC, Flickr Commons

Teacher Eva La Mar's third graders become historians, writers, and [...] »

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Using Primary Sources

Strategies for analyzing primary sources

Photo, _DSC0004, December 5, 2009, Eric Gilliland, Flickr

When visiting historical sites, sometimes you need a visual/emotional "hook" to [...] »

Photo. Illumination Ceremony at dawn. Flickr

So you don't live near Gettysburg or the Alamo—can you still teach with [...] »

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Teaching with Textbooks

Techniques for promoting historical inquiry

Poster, Williams, Brown & Earle, Inc., Grown Ups Enjoy Reading, Also., NYPL

Class discussion and personal inquiry builds an interactive relationship [...] »

Marginalia, CHNM

Turn your textbook into a conversation by scanning its language for biases. [...] »

Marginalia, CHNM

Show your students how to challenge the authority gap between the textbook and [...] »

Print, "Bombardment of Vera Cruz," 1893-1896, J. Andre Castaigne, NYPL

Allow students to see that history as we know it is interpretation, perspective [...] »

Marginalia, CHNM

The language of history textbooks challenges English language learners and [...] »

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