Wednesday, December 30, 2015

My favorite resource for teaching with historic sites

The National Park Service lists over 80,000 historic properties in its National Register of Historic Places.  With a list that long, historic places -- which include buildings, sites, districts, and structures -- are located in almost every American county.
Image result for national park service national register of historic places

Luckily for us, the Park Service has created over 150 classroom-ready lessons plans to accompany many of the most significant of those sites.
Image result for teaching with historic places
The site has a searchable index that allows for sorting by state, era (there are seven of them), theme (there are 45 of them), and curriculum standard (based on either the National Standards for History or Curriculum Standards for Social Studies).  It also allows for sorting based on the type (e.g., book chart, image, map) of primary source.

In the routine course of my planning I would generally use the historical era sort to search for lessons that deal with the topics I am discussing with my students.  But I would also use the source "type" search when I was looking to practice with a particular type of primary source.

You can follow the National Park Service's education programs @NPSEducation.