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Historical Thinking Poster


Historical Thinking and the Classroom


Historical Thinking Matters a website focused on key topics in U.S. history, that is designed to teach students how to critically read primary sources and how to critique and construct historical narratives. Video

Supporting Research

Stevie and Joyce met while they were both part of Pennsylvania's Classroom for the Future (CFF) initiative, Joyce as a CFF coach and Stevie as a CFF Intermediate Unit Technology Integration Mentor (TIM). Since then, they have been working together developing and presenting workshops to educators based on there sources of the National Archives and the Library of Congress.

They both have also been influenced by the work of Bernajean Porter http://www.digitales.us/ and Dr. Lynell Burmark http://educatebetter.org/. Bernajean on the art, purpose, and universal appeal of storytelling and the fact that writing a good story can "lift the spirits, spark creativity and imaginations while deepening content and technical skills" and Lynell on the importance and impact of using visual materials to help students retain what they learn. Primary sources can serve as, the building blocks for student created documentaries or docudramas, a springboard for writing prompts, or the deeper understanding of the past.

Digital tools and authentic learning experiences to encourage critical thinking and creativity are promoted by the NETS Standards. The Nation’s Report Card: The U.S. History Highlights 2001 Executive summary stated that students whose teachers reported using primary historical documents on a weekly basis had higher average scores than those whose teachers did so less frequently.


Use of Primary Sources:

Berger, Pam. "Student Inquiry and Web 2.0" School Library Monthly. 26 January 2010. Web.

Bloom, Nena. E. and Cynthia Stout. “Using Digitized Primary Source Materials in the Classroom: A Colorado Case Study.” First Monday.: A Peer Reviewed Journal on the Internet. 2005 First Monday. 6 Oct. 2008

Buerkett, Rebecca. "Inquiry and Assessment Using Web 2.0 Tools." School Library Monthly. 28
September/October 2011: 21 - 24.

"Chapter 3." Supporting Inquiry with Primary Resources. Professional Development. Library of Congress,
n.d. Web. 03 Oct. 2011.

Halsall, Paul. “Medieval Sourcebook: History through Primary
Sources.”Adapted from James Harvey Robinson, "The Historical
Point of View” in Readings in European History, Vol. I, (Boston:
Ginn, 1904), 1-13. Internet Source Book. 1998. Fordham
University. 6 Oct. 2008

Harris, J., & Hofer, M. " Instructional planning activity types as vehicles for curriculum-based TPACK
development". In C. D. Maddux, (Ed.). Research highlights in technology and teacher education
.Chesapeake, VA: Society for Information Technology in Teacher Education. Web. 2009.

Jansen, Barbara A. "Inquiry Unpacked: An Introduction to Inquiry-Based Learning." Library Media
Connectiion. 29 March/April 2011: 10 - 12.

Johnson, Mary J. Primary Source Teaching the Web 2.0 Way K-12.
Ohio: Linworth Publishing, 2009.

Kobrin, David. Beyond the Textbook: Teaching History Using
Documents and Primary Sources. New Hampshire: Heineman, 1996.

Veccia, Susan. Uncovering Our History: Teaching with Primary Resources. Chicago: American Library Association, 2003.