In this lesson on the Spanish American War from Historical Thinking Matters, students will explore sources, webquests, and activities designed to help in answering the following essay question: "The explosion of the U.S.S. Maine caused the United States to invade Cuba in 1898. Use the documents provided and your own knowledge to evaluate this statement. Do you agree with this explanation of the causes of the Spanish American War? Why or why not? Use and cite evidence from the documents to support your analysis of this statement.â€
In this lesson, students investigate where on the bus Rosa Parks sat on the day of her arrest. They explore two primary documentsâ€”one that contests and one that supportsâ€”the account presented in the textbook. First, the teacher elicits studentsâ€™ beliefs about where Rosa Parks sat, and asks where students learned their information. Then, students read a textbook passage and two conflicting primary documents. Finally, students decide which of the primary documents they believe is more trustworthy and write a paragraph defending their choice.
This lesson starts with what students know about Rosa Parks and then uses a series of three primary sources to complicate Rosa Parksâ€™ story. Students read a sample textbook excerpt that includes the familiar narrative; then, after reading and analyzing each primary source, they consider how it compares with that narrative. Using think-alouds from the site, students see historians considering and analyzing significant passages from these documents. Finally, using evidence from both the primary sources and textbook account, students create their own brief narratives of Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott.
In this lesson, students engage in an historical inquiry about the Montgomery Bus Boycott. They watch a short introductory movie, read six documents, answer guiding questions, and prepare to complete the final essay assignment using their notes as evidence from the documents to craft a more complete story of the boycott.
In this lesson, students critique a standard textbook account of Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycott. They read and analyze two primary documents and consider how this evidence specifically contests the textbookâ€™s account. First, the teacher elicits studentsâ€™ existing knowledge about Rosa Parks. Then, students read a textbook passage and two conflicting primary documents. Finally, students write a revised textbook account or an editorial pointing out the textbook accountâ€™s deficiencies and how these affect our understanding of this important event.
In this lesson, students use primary source documents and a movie to prompt thinking about why many Tennesseans supported the Butler Act, which forbade the teaching of evolution. Students will formulate hypotheses, fill in a graphic organizer, and support their ideas with evidence from historical documents.
In this lesson, students participate in a Structured Academic Controversy (SAC) as they investigate the question: Did Americans Support the Butler Act? In pairs, students read primary documents and assemble evidence to answer this question either affirmatively or negatively. Students then present their arguments to each other and try to reach consensus regarding the question, or to at least clarify their differences.
In this lesson, students consider the historical context that framed and stirred public interest in the Scopes trial. They watch a short introductory movie, read eight documents, answer guiding questions, and prepare to complete the final essay assignment using their notes. Students listen to a historian think aloud about excerpts from the documents to see analytical reading in action. They use a graphic organizer to guide their note taking. Finally, students write an essay using evidence from these documents to craft an argument that considers the historical context of the Scopes trial.
In this lesson students use a statement from the American Federation of Teachers and an editorial from the Chicago Defender to expand upon the textbookâ€™s depiction of the Scopes trial as a clash between â€œcreationistsâ€ and â€œevolutionists.â€ First, students read and analyze a passage from a selected textbook. Then they read documents showing different perspectives on the Scopes trial. Finally, each student writes a letter to the textbook publisher suggesting ways to edit the textbook using evidence from these primary documents.
In this lesson, students use primary source documents to compare perspectives on helping the poor during the Great Depression. Students will examine different approaches to relief presented in two primary documents, answer questions relating to the documents, and explain which approach they think best and why.
In this lesson, students learn about the rivaling policy proposals for aid to the aged in the early 1930s. They examine a poster for the Social Security Act that was created by the Social Security Board. Then, they design posters for the different policies proposed by Huey Long and Francis Townsend. Finally, students analyze posters from other eras of American history.
In this lesson, students engage in an inquiry focused upon different historical interpretations of Social Security and the New Deal. They examine the different ways that historians Carl Degler, Barton Bernstein, and Anthony Badger have addressed the question: Did the Social Security Act and the New Deal fundamentally change the role of American government in the economy? Students learn elements of historiographyâ€”in particular that interpretations of history may differ, in part, due to the evidence used by historians and their particular perspectives. Finally, students answer the inquiry question themselves and support their arguments with evidence from both primary and secondary documents.
In this lesson on the Spanish American War from Historical Thinking Matters, students will use contrasting newspaper accounts of the explosion of the Maine to gain insight into how an authorâ€™s word and information choices influence the message and tone of the text. Students will view a 3-minute movie to establish context, use a graphic organizer to compare the articles, and write an essay where they take a position about which account is most believable.
In this lesson, students work through the Spanish-American War investigation on the Historical Thinking Matters website. They read the nine documents, answer guiding questions on the interactive on-line notebook, and prepare to complete the final essay assignment using their notes. Each day includes a brief teacher-led activity or presentation designed to facilitate studentsâ€™ work. Students complete an essay and participate in a discussion reviewing the four historical reading strategies used to frame the siteâ€™s notebook questions.
In this lesson, students use McKinleyâ€™s war speech ("McKinley" document) to challenge a textbookâ€™s account of the explosion of the Maine triggering the Spanish-American War. First, students read a selected textbook passage and begin to analyze its story. They then consider what McKinleyâ€™s war speech to Congress might contribute to their understanding of these causes, read McKinleyâ€™s words, and answer the notebook questions on the site. Finally, each student rewrites the textbook passage using evidence from this primary document.