Welcome to Best Practices

Spotlight on Elementary Education

Oral histories and interviews are a unique form of historical documentation. This guide by Linda Shopes offers an overview of the various ways oral history can be integrated into classroom discussions. Though some of the techniques will have to be adapted for elementary students, the ideas Shopes presents are extremely useful. FIND OUT MORE »

Example of Historical Thinking

Scholars, students, and teachers model historical thinking
Two Blues Songs

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

The Election of 1932: Photographs of FDR

What can a photograph of Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932 reveal? Donald A. [...] »

Declaration of Independence

Historian Rosemarie Zagarri reads the Declaration of Independence closely, [...] »

The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum: Personalizing History

Make large-scale historic events like the Holocaust personal with artifacts [...] »

Touring Monticello

Tour Monticello with TAH teachers and learn about the history behind Thomas [...] »

Teaching in Action

Teachers demonstrate promising teaching practices
Causal Reasoning

The fictional Alphonse the Camel provides insight for one classroom.

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Opening up the Textbook: Voices from My Lai

High school students use primary sources to question their textbook's [...] »

Using Primary Sources

Strategies for analyzing primary sources
Reading Like a Historian
Photo, We <3 Students Who <3 Reading, Mar. 9, 2010, Enokson, Flickr

Use the Stanford History Education Group's curriculum to teach historical [...] »

Document Analysis Worksheets
Screenshot, "Written Document," National Archives

Find the National Archive's worksheets for analyzing a variety of primary [...] »

Teaching with Textbooks

Techniques for promoting historical inquiry
Using Historiography to Analyze the Mexican-American War
Print, "Bombardment of Vera Cruz," 1893-1896, J. Andre Castaigne, NYPL

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

Children’s Voices from the Civil War
Negative, "Sgt. John Clem, U.S.A.," 1855-1865, Library of Congress

Help students identify with the past via children who lived through the [...] »

Building a Conversation between Textbooks, Students, and Teachers

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

Questioning Textbook Authority
Marginalia, CHNM

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

The Grammar of History Textbooks Part II: Questioning the Text
Marginalia, CHNM

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