Resources for the Classroom



FOR PENNSYLVANIA TEACHERS: American Treasure Boxes: Waynesburg University’s Teaching with Primary Sources (TPS) program offers free printed and recorded primary source materials to use in your classroom. American Treasures Boxes are chock-full of primary sources downloaded from the Library of Congress digitized collections.
Bring the rich collections of historical materials to your classroom—even without the internet!

What’s inside an American Treasures Box?
Resource CD with electronic copies of all the included resources,
Dozens of printed documents and images (many are poster-size), and
Lesson plans and activity ideas for incorporating the materials into your classroom.
American Treasures are FREE for use in K-16 classrooms!

Check out the complete list of topics at Waynesburg University

Teaching Critical Thinking Resources and Downloads from Edutopia

LOC Teachers Quarterly


HISTORICAL SCENE INVESTIGATIONThe HSI instructional model consists of the following four steps:
  • Becoming a Detective
  • Investigating the Evidence
  • Searching for Clues
  • Cracking the Case

February classroom topics primary resource list (Black History, Presidents, and Valentine's Day)





Teaching History - National History Education Clearinghouse - here you will find extensive teaching materials, history content and best practices.

The National Archives featured online exhibits Here you will find primary resources for all subject areas

Heroes and Villains from the National Archives of the United Kingdom - complete with timelines, background information, and activities. (JFK. Martin Luther King, Jr, and Truman are some of the historical figures featured on the site.)

Go for Broke National Education Center - Japanese American Oral Histories

Primary Source Document Exercise from the Smithsonian on Washington and Lincoln's Death

Rag Linen is an educational archive of rare and historic newspapers, which serve as the first drafts of history and the critical primary source material for historians, authors and educators.

Radio Diaries has been giving people tape recorders and working with them to report on their own lives and histories.

A Very Old Placeblog - Cool blog with links to primary resources -50's, Chicago fire, Titantic and more

Cemetery Scene Investigation Why is the preservation of local cemeteries important?
Historic Maps in the K-12 Classroom This resource for K-12 teachers and students developed by the Hermon Dunlap Smith Center for the History of Cartography at the Newberry Library is designed to bring historically significant map documents into your classroom. Inside are high quality images of historic map documents that illustrate the geographical dimensions of American history.Each map is accompanied by lesson plans written for four grade levels and designed to support a variety of social studies, history, and geography curricula.
Curriculum Modules The Gilder Lehrman Institute’s website serves as a gateway to American history online with rich resources for educators, designed specifically for K-12 teachers and students.
Real American Stories Sample documents, speeches, poems, people and moments in history that continue to inspire us.
EyeWitness to History History through the eyes of those who lived it.
Historical Treasure Chests Primary sources such as letters, diaries, photographs, maps and artifacts provide students with authentic materials from the past. By looking closely for details, students can draw conclusions about the items and formulate their own hypotheses about the time period(s) during which they were created. Further research, using secondary sources, will either confirm or challenge their ideas.
The following activity provides a model for engaging students in an investigation of authentic materials from the past. The students will be provided with four primary sources and questions to guide their investigation. A wealth of other primary resources can be accessed on the websites listed in the reference section.
Using Primary Sources on the Webfrom the Reference and User's Association - This brief guide is designed to provide students and researchers with information to help them evaluate the internet sources and the quality of primary materials that can be found online.
Digital History from the University of Houston - the site includes a digital textbook and interactive timeline. It also has resources categorized by era, topic, voices, and exhibitions.
History Mattersdesigned for high school and college teachers and students to serve as a gateway to web resources and useful materials for teaching U.S. history. Includes a "Making Sense of Evidence" section to help make effective use of primary sources. It provides strategies for analyzing online primary materials, with interactive exercises and a guide to traditional and online sources. “Scholars in Action” segments show how scholars puzzle out the meaning of different kinds of primary sources, allowing you to try to make sense of a document yourself then providing audio clips in which leading scholars interpret the document and discuss strategies for overall analysis.
Today in History App As soon as you open the application you are shown all the major events that happened on that day. Created for history, trivia, and knowledge lovers and also for fans of On This Day, This Day In, Today In pages.
Museum Box This site provides the tools for one to build an argument or describe an event, person, or historical period by placing items in a virtual box. Anything from a text file to a movie can be included.

Repositories of Primary SourcesA listing of over 5000 websites describing holdings of manuscripts, archives, rare books, historical photographs, and other primary sources for the research scholar. All links have been tested for correctness and appropriateness. This site includes several international websites.

Free Videoconferences

The Library of Congress provides several free professional development videoconferences on a wide variety of topics.

The National Archives also offers free interactive, document based videoconferences


edtechteacher on iPads

Library of Congress LiveBinder