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Historical Thinking Skills Interactives

Found In: social studies, 6-8, 9-12

One element of this professional development course, Historical Thinking Skills Interactives, features five interactive units that model skills and include extensions and a sixth unit that includes suggestions on how to use primary sources within the interactive. Each unit takes 20-60 minutes to complete. Teachers can earn graduate credits. For more information see: America's History in the Making: A Special Collection from Annenberg Learner or EDUC 591F - Workshop: America's History in the Making.

Professional Develop Interactives

  1. With Placing Artifacts in Time, teachers develop chronological thinking. Using Pocahontas as an example, they explore how historical representations change over time and reflect the period in which they were created. (20-30 minutes)
  2. Analyzing Artifacts introduces the process of analyzing historical artifacts using a framework of five key aspects. (20-30 minutes)
  3. Reading Maps provides the basic skills in reading and analyzing maps. (20-30 minutes)
  4. In Evaluating Evidence, teachers evaluate primary sources and determine their support of a thesis. Using the Civil War as an example, they rank the relevancy of sources in relation to four common beliefs about the cause of the war. (30-45 minutes)
  5. In Curating an Exhibit teachers follow four steps to build a museum exhibit under the general theme of "Conflicts in American History." They choose a specific topic based on their own artifact selections. (45-60 minutes)
  6. In Balancing Sources, teachers examine events, consider how they have been portrayed, and create a narrative that considers various perspectives. Teachers examine and choose several primary sources to represent different perspectives of an era. (30-40 minutes)



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