Unpuzzling History with Primary Sources

Edited by:
Jeremiah Clabough, University of Alabama at Birmingham
Thomas N. Turner, University of Tennessee
William B. Russell III, Ph.D., University of Central Florida
Stewart Waters, The University of Tennessee

A volume in the series: Teaching and Learning Social Studies. Editor(s): William B. Russell III, Ph.D., University of Central Florida.

Published 2015

Recent advances in technology have created easy access for classroom teachers and students alike to a vast store of primary sources. This fact accompanied by the growing emphasis on primary documents through education reform movements has created a need for active approaches to learning from such sources. Unpuzzling History with Primary Sources addresses this need. It looks at the role that primary sources can play in a social studies curriculum in the 21st century. Each chapter deals with a different aspect of teaching primary sources.

Each chapter includes a discussion of key issues, model activities, and resources for upper elementary through high school teachers. A model lesson plan also appears at the end of most chapters. Chapter one presents a unique perspective on the nature of history and primary sources. This is followed by chapters on how historical thinking and inquiry relate to primary sources.

Other chapters deal with individual types of primary sources. A glance at the table of contents will certainly draw the teacher’s interest regardless of teaching style. The skills that students gain from working with primary sources prepare them for the many responsibilities and duties of being a citizen in a democracy. Therefore, the book closes with a chapter pointing to the relationship of primary sources to citizenship education. This book will be useful as a resource for teachers and might serve as a text for in‐service, college methods courses, and school libraries. All four authors have experience in the K‐12 classroom as well as social studies teacher education.

Primary Sources Bring Us Face to Face With History. The Connections Among Primary Sources and Educational Reforms. What’s Primary About Primary Sources?. Types of Primary Sources. Benefits of Primary Sources. Overview of the Book. Conclusion. References. Primary Sources: Preparing Students to Use Their Utility Belts. How Social Scientists Use Primary Sources. Helping Our Students to Become Social Scientists. Benefits for Our Students Thinking Like a Social Scientist. Teaching Activities for Our Students to Become Social Scientists. Comparing and Contrasting the Laws. Problem Solving the Boston Massacre Trial. I Smell a Rat: Discovering How Disciplines Work Together. Surfing the Waves of an Era: Using Political Statements. Possible Questions for Exploring a Candidate’s Positions and Arguments. Conclusion. References. Lesson Plan for Chapter 2. Inquiry: The New Lifeblood of the Social Studies. Why Should Teachers Use Inquiry‐Based Instruction? Inquiry‐Based Questions. Shifting Students and Teachers’ Roles Through Inquiry. Inquiry and Content. Connecting Inquiry to Primary Sources. The Contribution of Technology to Inquiry. Inquiry Into Primary Sources: How Does It Work. Learning How to Crawl With Research Skills. Closed Questions About Jefferson’s Beliefs About the Role of the Federal Government. Historical Lies, Hoaxes, and Misconceptions. From the Collected Papers of John Alden. How Many Rules Does a President Need?. It’s A Conspiracy!. Conclusion. References. Lesson Plan for Chapter 3. Primary Sources and the Technology Gold Rush. Leveling the Playing Field. Getting the Gold Without Having to Fight Dragons. Why do Teachers Want and Need the Gold? Finding Digitized Primary Sources: “So Easy That a Caveman Could Do It”. Teaching With Digitized Primary Sources. Analyzing Multiple Interpretations of an Event With Primary Sources. Questions About the Versions of Pope Urban II’s Call for the Crusades. Eulogizing Historical Figures With Primary Sources. Researching and Summarizing Contrasting Perspectives About Historical Figures. Reagan’s Policies and Beliefs. Breaking News: Student‐Created Newscasts. Newscast About the Origins of the Great War. Conclusion. Appendix A. Our Top 25 Digitized Collections of Primary Sources. References. Lesson Plan for Student Newscast. Drama Makes Primary Sources Come Alive. Reader’s Theater: No Pain Drama. Claims About Drama. The Importance and Flexibility of Dramatic Activities. Dramatic Activities and Primary Sources. Elements of Drama. The Great Range of Dramatic Activities. Tied to the Railroad Track: The Power of Drama With Primary Sources. Picture Perfect or Becoming the Picture. Speech Relays. “Quoteful” Interviews. Correspondence Analysis. Concluding Remarks. References. Lesson Plan for Chapter 5. Possible Web Sources. Heroes, Scholars, and Statesmen: Primary Sources and the Quest for Writing Skills. Writing is Thought Made Permanent and Much More. The Symbiotic Relationship of Writing Activities and Primary Sources. Selecting theRight Writing Activities to Go With the Right Primary Sources. Writing With, For, and About Primary Sources. “Writing Like Ben Franklin”. The Rule of Law Versus the Rule of Rulers. Writing Epic Genre Parodies. Becoming Speech Writers. Conclusion. References. Lesson Plan: Writing Epic Genre Parodies. References for Lesson. Music and Film as Primary Sources. Utilizing Music and Film as Primary Sources. Music and Film as Historiography. Legal Issues. Music and Film to Promote Historical Understanding. Dr. Strangelove: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964). A Change is Gonna Come (1964). A Raisin in the Sun (1961). The Times They Are a‐Changin’ (1964). Conclusion. References. Lesson Plan for Chapter 7. Making the Most of Memorable Spaces Exploring Local Monuments and Historic Sites. Why Should Teachers Use Monuments and Historic Sites in Their Instruction?. Tourism. Accessibility. Understanding Communities. Analysis of Social Issues. Monumental Questions to Consider. Monuments and Historic Sites as Primary Sources. Effective Classroom Strategies and Activities. Field Trips. Virtual Tours. Group Projects. Persuasive Writing. Conclusion. References. Lesson Plan for Chapter 9. Citizenship, the Reason That the Social Studies Exists. Empowering Citizens With Primary Sources. Modeling Ideas and Principles. Understanding the Nature of Our Democracy. Decoding the Message. A Vision for the Problem‐Solving Process. The Tao of the Social Studies: Primary Sources Show Us the Way. What Makes a Good Citizen?. Simulating the House of Representatives. Propaganda: One War Bond Poster at a Time. Problem Solving/Decision‐Making Activity. Conclusion. References. Lesson Plan for Chapter 9. Appendix. Bills for House of Representatives Simulation. About the Authors.