History Websites and Links
|Reading Like a Historian
This is a foundational site for history and social studies teachers learning how to make historical thinking an integral part of their classroom strategies and methodology. Reading Like a Historian offers seventy-five historical thinking lessons divided into twelve typical American History units of instruction and posters for the classroom that explain how to Source, Contextualize, Read Closely, and Corroborate primary and secondary sources to construct meaning and to answer essential questions.
|Historical Thinking Matters
Learn how to think historically with four online investigations of the Spanish-American War, Scopes-Monkey Trial, Social Security, and Rosa Parks. This site also offers a solid explanation of why historical thinking matters by exploring the conflicting accounts of the exchanges between the Americans and Redcoats on Lexington Green in 1775.
|The National Archives: Docs Teach, Digital Vaults, and Document Analysis Sheets
Go beyond the textbook and learn about history first hand with the National Archives Docs Teach, Digital Vaults, and Document Analysis Sheets. Docs Teach is a unique site that allows teachers to create a variety of historical thinking activities. The Digital Vaults allow students to make posters for classroom or History Day projects. Finally, NARA’s document analysis sheets are a foundation tool for sourcing documents and laying a foundation for further historical thought.
http://www.archives.gov/nae/education/ (click on the Tool Box link)
|The National History Education Clearinghouse
The National History Education Clearinghouse (NHEC) helps teachers become more effective and shows students how history affects people’s daily lives. The Clearninghouse was co-developed by George Mason and Stanford Universities in association with the American Historical Association and the National History Center, and is funded by the U.S. Department of Education. The Clearinghouse has links to a wide range of history information, sources, and content. It provides teaching tools and lesson plan reviews, guides to working with primary sources, and models of classroom teaching. Don’t forget to sign-up for your FREE Historical Thinking Poster from NHEC at http://teachinghistory.org/nhec-blog/24174.
|Library of Congress: Teaching with Primary Sources
The Library of Congress site offers collections of primary resources, including the American Memory, Veterans’ History Project, as well as several other media and art collections. TPS also offers workshops and online professional development for teachers wanting to learn more about primary source analysis and historical thinking.
|The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History
Listen to podcasts of recent lectures from America’s most distinguished historians, explore online exhibits, expand your understanding of past events with the History Now online professional journal, or test your knowledge of American history by taking an online history quiz. The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History has a wide variety of resources to help teachers and students expand their understanding of American History.
|Best of History Web Sites Best of History Web Sites
An award-winning portal that contains annotated links to over 1200 history web sites as well as links to hundreds of quality K-12 history lesson plans, history teacher guides, history activities, history games, history quizzes, and more.
Smithsonian Education has several History and Culture Lesson Plans (K-12) and Idea Labs for American History and Artifacts and Analysis. Lastly, a solid explanation of how to Teach with Primary Sources and DBQ’s (and Mini-Q’s) listed by Historical Topics can be found at Smithsonian Source: Resources for Teaching American History.
|Historical Scene Investigation
Complete historical investigations (online document-based questions) on important events in American History by examining primary and secondary source documents and drawing your own conclusions.
|The History Detectives – PBS
Go in search of the past with the History Detectives. View video segments from past shows and learn how historians conduct research to solve historical problems.
http://pbskids.org/historydetectives/ (kids site)
http://www.pbs.org/opb/historydetectives/ (adult site)
|Benchmarks of Historical Thinking
The Benchmarks Project combines the research of historians and educators with the experience and skills of classroom teachers to create practical ways of encouraging promoting and assessing students’ historical thinking in classroom settings. The explanation of Historical Thinking Concepts is a real power component of this resource. Another practical explanation of historical thinking is available on vimeo, where Dr. Peter Seixas explains the difficulty with having a “conversation with the past.”
|National History Day in Ohio
National History Day is an exciting co-curricular program that encourages young people to explore a historical subject related to the annual theme. Each year students from across Ohio and the United States present at the district and state levels for a chance to go to nationals in Washington, D.C. to compete for recognition and monetary awards.
The site has links to essential topics for students taking AP U.S. History, AP European History, or Global Studies. This is definitely a site to bookmark for all high school history students.
Hippo Campus is a comprehensive multimedia website for high school age students. Please click on U.S. History or American Government Links (which will reveal links to AP US History and AP U.S. Government and Politics as well) to start exploring the resources and their correlation to your classes textbook.
|Ben’s Guide to U.S. Government for Kids
This site is a service of the U.S. Government Printing Office and provides a variety of information, games, and activities about the U.S. history, government, and citizenship.
|The Choices Program: History and Current Issues for the Classroom
Brown University’s Choices Program uses a problem-based approach to make current and historical issues and meaningful for secondary students. The Choices Program curriculum is available for purchase , but several components of the program are accessible to teachers for free on their website, including: Scholars Online, Teaching with the News, Supplemental Materials, and Teaching Tools.
|The History Channel Classroom
See what happened this day in history, take a historical quiz, or search the History Channel’s study guides, videos, and audio podcasts at the History Channel Classroom website. There are several free resources and ones for purchase.
|The DBQ Project
The DBQ Project offers several binders of Document-based Questions (DBQ’s) for purchase. The DBQ’s are titled by an overarching essential question, which are listed at their website. A strength of the DBQ project is their approach, set-up and training, which includes “hook” exercises, background essays, bucketing documents (categorization with a term kids grasp), scaffolding questions, the “crow’s foot” organizing tool, and skeleton essay outlines (a essential scaffold for students).
|History Matters Designed for high school and college teachers and students of U.S. history survey courses, this site serves as a gateway to web resources and offers unique teaching materials, first-person primary documents, and guides to analyzing historical evidence. The site emphasizes materials that focus on the lives of ordinary Americans and actively involve students in analyzing and interpreting evidence.|
|Teaching with Historic Places This program of the National Park Service uses properties listed in the Park Service’s National Register of Historic Places to enliven history, social studies, geography, civics, and other subjects. TwHP has created a variety of products and activities that help teachers bring historic places into the classroom.|
|Bringing History Home Since 2001, school districts have adopted Bringing History Home to engage children in rigorous history explorations. Bringing History Home (BHH) instructional units sequentially develop student skills and knowledge in history across the K-5 grade levels. Inspired by their students’ learning, BHH teachers have become committed advocates for history education in elementary schools. Consequently, BHH is now the K-5 social studies centerpiece in eight Iowa school districts, and the project teaching strategies have been adopted by districts in at least six other states.|
A non-profit organization with a mission to reduce the cost of textbook materials for the K-12 market both in the U.S. and worldwide. Using an open-content, web-based collaborative model termed the “FlexBook,” CK-12 intends to pioneer the generation and distribution of high quality educational content that will serve both as core text as well as provide an adaptive environment for learning through the FlexBook Platform™.