Charles Minard's compelling infographic from the 1800's depicts Napolean's march and shows the number of men he had, the path they took, and the temperature on the return route in a powerful way. This is an example of infographics and how they can tell a story. If you're a history teacher you'll want to use this graphic and perhaps challenge your students to use an infographics tool to tell a story of a historical event.
Students across the country have already started working on their IWitness Challenge project sponsored by the USC Shoah Foundation - The Institute for Visual History and Education, but there’s still time for youngsters in your community to enter this free online program geared to all secondary-school students.
The deadline to enter the Challenge is Dec. 2, 2013. The winning student, along with their teacher and a family member will be brought to Los Angeles to showcase their work as part of the 20th anniversary activities for the Shoah Foundation, which was founded by director Steven Spielberg in 1994 after making “Schindler’s List.”
Tthe IWitness Challenge (iwitness.usc.edu) connects students with the past in a very personal way that spurs them to take action to improve the future.
With access to many of the Shoah Foundation’s 52,000 testimonies of survivors, liberators and rescuers, students experience history in a way that hits home. Instead of reading facts from textbooks, students feel the emotions and build relationships with those who lived through seemingly impossible situations.
But students do more than watch the testimony. The IWitness Challenge compels them to think, to make smart choices and to create their own project and video from what they’ve learned. By encouraging teachers and students to create their own lesson plans, IWitness allows them to expand on practically any subject they wish to pursue. From civics, government and history to poetry, art and ethics, educators can tailor lessons appropriate for their classrooms.
And by using the embedded editor, participants not only learn valuable searching and editing skills, but also how to make ethical editing decisions that ensure their finished assignments are a fair and accurate reflection of what they’ve seen. All work is kept safe inside the IWitness site and not accessible to the public.
Using IWitness is free, but teachers or homeschool parents must register at iwitness.usc.edu.
Cool little "tidbits" of knowledge. If you like to have neat "hooks" before your lessons each day, zidbits might have some cool things for you. "What is the hardest language to learn?" "What is the most lethal poison?" These are just a few of the cool little facts. They have history, science, health, and news featured on this site. Enjoy.
When researching a period of time, students should know how to "chronofence" or find information along a timeline. While Google nixed this type of search some time a go, there are many timeline makers that let you search for things in the context of timelines. This can be use for science, history, literature, and more.
Free textbooks in a variety of topics on CK-12. This is promoted as "learning made simple." Do students know how to find and download alternate sources of information? Can they find and search for the topics they are currently studying? This is a valuable way to compare and research topics.
When you're studying a particular subject, it makes sense to dig deeper. For example, the Civil War Trust has some excellent lesson plans on the Civil War as well as a field trip planner, glossary of civil war terms, civil war coloring book, and more. If you cover the civil war in the US, you'll want to visit this site. If you're studying anything, try searching for the word "lesson plans" in quotes along with the topic with a plus like +"civil war" and you'll be amazed at the results. Many of them align with standards from the states or National Council for Social Studies.
It is a great way to study culture and history to incorporate food into the lessons. As I've been perusing history websites to update my knowledge of what is out there, I came across hungry history on the history channel and love some of these ideas. If you're studying the UK, why not try scones? The South - fried chicken?
A US website funded with a grant from the US government that has history content, teaching materials and best practices in history. They also review website. They also have a historian that you can ask questions to and a database of previously asked questions. In a feature I like, they have a section of the site for the digital classroom.
A very useful livebinder by some teachers on QR codes in the elementary school with information and guides. I've found this is pretty updated even though the first page has a description from 2010. Very useful if you want to use them in your classroom or library at the elementary level.
"The Library of Congress, in collaboration with the U.S. Senate, House of Representatives and the Government Printing Office (GPO), today unveiled Congress.gov, a new public beta site for accessing free, fact-based legislative information. Congress.gov features platform mobility, comprehensive information retrieval and user-friendly presentation. Congress.gov, at beta.congress.gov, eventually will replace the public THOMAS system and the congressional Legislative Information System (LIS)."
The New York Times has some options to allow students to participate and learn from the US Presidential debates. If you're teaching and you are wanting to use this as a topic, this is a great lesson plan.
A searchable repository of news could be so useful in class. Instead of having students "print a news article"to discuss (what a waste of paper) how about a current events blog where videos are embedded and discussed,or have them create a wiki. There are so many things that can be done with this video. I wish the news organizations would release it for download and reuse in student videos (with proper citation, of course.)
This is a set of 12 lessons about what it was like for children to live in the second world war. I love this set of lessons because it builds empathy and helps teach the story of world war 2 from a child's perspective.
September 11 is coming up. While it is still very hard for many of us to even talk about this day, we have a whole 11+ years of our students who have no memory of this event. As teachers, we must get ourselves together to discuss and teach this event. As I've been reviewing the content on the share my lesson website, I've found a piece that I may consider in my own classroom, the world trade center film review piece. It has several films including "Saving Private Ryan" but also the film "World Trade Center" which would make for a good piece to use in the classroom.
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