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Best Practices

Engage students in a creative learning activity that will teach them to understand the importance of multiple perspectives and historical context. Though this unit focuses exclusively on colonial and pre-Revolutionary America, the concepts and practices outlined in the activity can be adapted for other periods in history. FIND OUT MORE »

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Examples of Historical Thinking

Scholars, students, and teachers model historical thinking

Maine Results. Herblock cartoon, 1932

Donald A. Ritchie, Historian of the U.S. Senate, asks how a political cartoon [...] »

Who was Jane Addams, and how is her article "Why Women Should Vote" still [...] »

Milk Tickets for Babies, in Place of Milk, created by Thomas Nast in 1876

Today, we accept paper—and electronic—money as a fact of life. [...] »

Congress discussing the Bill of Rights

Whitman Ridgway outlines some of the context in which the Bill of Rights was [...] »

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

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Teaching in Action

Teachers demonstrate promising teaching practices

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

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

Photo, An impatient domino. Flickr

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

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Using Primary Sources

Strategies for analyzing primary sources

Photo, Toy Cradleboard, Nez Perce National Historical Park, NEPE 1629

National Park Service lesson plans, teaching materials, and vibrant images [...] »

Photo, A private interview between a young immigrant . . . , Edwin Levick, NYPL

The Bracero Archive’s tutorial shows how to conduct successful interviews. [...] »

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Teaching with Textbooks

Techniques for promoting historical inquiry

Negative, "Schoolroom. Concho, Arizona," Russell Lee, Oct. 1940, LoC

Make the most of your textbook—engage students in close reading and [...] »

Photography, Cooking with Kids class, 25 Jan 2008, Penn State, Flickr CC

Turn your students into 'master chefs' by using learning menus that allow [...] »

Marginalia, CHNM

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

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

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

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

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

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