Historical Thinking
Historical Thinking - Wrapup
/ Task

Bus Boycotts
Middle
The 1955 Bus Boycotts- Were the boycotts planned or did they just happen? Using various sources, students will read and make a timeline to answer the question.
Historical Inquiry - SCIM-C Approach and Open Approach
Elementary
History, just like the finer arts, can be best appreciated when it connects with a person or group of persons, or "us". It is held meaningful when engaged by, whether it is supported or challenged, by intelligent spectators or audience. History is many things - it is daunting, mesmerizing, enigmatic, riveting, inspiring, a disappointment, a tragedy, a celebration, victory and/or redemption. Most of all, it connects the state of humanity in various stages through time. As a teacher, the best approach to teach History I believe is to teach it with an open mind. Present history with the strongest factual, verifiable information as is, and let the students derive their own thoughts, opinions, and ideas about that piece of history. Establish a welcoming, non-judgmental approach from the outset. Lead the students to think more critically, challenge their own ideas or biases, going forward by asking relevant, direct questions. Use poignant questions designed to deepen their understanding, utilize higher thinking skills, but at the same time, keep the discussions practical and relatable to the students, in fact, make it "personal", if at all possible. The eternal and foundational truth about history is that it tells "our" story no matter how far back it has happened in the past, or where it has transpired and how. History is "our" story (not "their" story). The more we learn about history, the more we learn about ourselves.

I will utilize the Historical Thinking Inquiry - Summarizing, Inferring, Monitoring, and Corroborate to guide my questioning and deepen instruction. I will introduce the lesson by meeting my students where they are - I will acknowledge and even welcome biases and misconceptions in this initial stage. But with guided inquiry, I will carefully lead my students to think more critically and understand the different facets and pieces of history, appreciate the complications that transpired, the nuances of the times, the characters involved, their aspirations and motivations, and in the end, discuss the significance of that event, its relevance, impact and outcomes.
Teacher
Elementary
In the classroom, I can enrich my students by developing activities that allow them to apply historical thinking. An example, is creating a timeline that included a series of events through time but also helping the develop an understanding of each event.
Declaration of Independence
High
Students will analyze the Declaration of Independence to develop a perspective as to why the document was written. By comparing different versions of the document, describe changes to document and why those changes were made. Using the document draw conclusions about the life of Thomas Jefferson.
History cannot just be for the winners.
Elementary
There is an old saying that the victors write the history. This is not what historical thinking is. Historical thinking is considering all the points of view from history to create a full picture.

I have a picture I took at a zoo that I use to teach main idea and details. It is a picture of a peacock in a penguin habitat. If you just look at a piece of the picture like just the penguins or just the peacock you miss the meaning, that the peacock was trying to keep the penguins from entering their habitats.

History is like this. You need to look at the full picture, not just one viewpoint to get an accurate assessment of what actually happened.
Creating Thinkers
Elementary
I have always used KWL charts, but have never heard of the SCIM-C method. I like that it is all inquiry-based and allows students to experience history at a much deeper level. That is the experience I would like to create in my classroom. Having students do the detective work and be active participants in analyzing primary sources would be ideal. I will definitely use this in creating a unit for students, where they would be detectives each week. I teach k-5 gifted resource. We do a novel study in 5th grade and I keep thinking of Number the Stars. What a great addition to be able to add some primary sources from that time period and facilitate student engagement with that historical era. Students could be presented with an item each week and not only examine and analyze it, but also relate it to the novel. I have in mind to have some discussion on the historical fiction in the novel and what our primary sources tell us about the time period. Students would need evidence about their item and need to make a claim and see if they can corroborate it. This would be wonderful to do in the regular classroom as well.
Civil War
Elementary
I would like to use primary sources to aid in teaching the similarities as well as the differences of both Union and Confederate soldiers. Using these, as well as the SCIM-C method, would then naturally move the discussion to explore the soldiers more deeply, such as whether women fought or the role Native Americans and African Americans played. I also hope to incorporate the relationships, reasoning and roles these different people held as well as important historical figures, like Robert E. Lee and others.
Civil War
Elementary
I would like to use primary sources to aid in teaching the similarities as well as the differences of both Union and Confederate soldiers. Using these, as well as the SCIM-C method, would then naturally move the discussion to explore the soldiers more deeply, such as whether women fought or the role Native Americans and African Americans played. I also hope to incorporate the relationships, reasoning and roles these different people held as well as important historical figures, like Robert E. Lee and others.
Primary Sources - the 19th Amendment
High
I love using primary sources in the classroom and am going to use the SCIM-C method to help students decode the information from the primary documents. I also like the idea of including multiple sources to analyze a specific event. I am especially thinking of the 19th Amendment and the trials that women went through to gain the right to vote. Looking at the different approaches by women to gain the right to vote, and those against the Amendment, can give students a new appreciation of the fight for women's suffrage.
Ms. McCrary 5th grade teacher
Elementary
I think that I would start off with a question and allow for the students to look, learn, and fill in the blanks such as the teacher did in Part One, on what John Smith thought was valuable? You could start with a question and then filter down with the specifics from there.
World Geography
High
I used the K-W-L strategy a lot when I introduce a new unit. It is a good way to get a feel of what the students know about a new unit. It also gives me another tool in my toolbox to assess what my students strengths and weaknesses are.
Civil War
Elementary
I plan to share maps and letters from soldiers during the Civil War. It will allow them to feel what the soldiers felt when they were there.
Less Telling, More Doing
K-12 instructional specialist
The statement in the Connections Essay about students spending the majority of their time learning about the "what" of history and not the "how" of history really hit home with me. I think one of the most applicable things we can do in history classrooms is to spend less time telling students about history and more time creating learning experiences that have students "doing" history.

I understand that teachers are concerned about--and feel responsible for--covering the required content in the time they have with their students. They often express concern that taking the time for students to "do" history means less time to spend on the "what" of history, which is the content that is tested. I understand those concerns and, at times, have felt similarly. The 4th grade classroom videos demonstrated to me that there is not a tradeoff when students are "doing" the skills of historians and are engaged in historical thinking. I heard the 4th grade students using academic vocabulary and making connections to the content in the Virginia Studies standards in a way that was far more engaging than just learning the facts and repeating them back. Yes, it was apparent that the 4th grade students had been taught some historical facts in previous lessons, but analyzing John Smith's map made those facts relevant and applicable to their learning. In addition, the students were practicing the historical thinking skills that will serve them long after their Virginia Studies class is complete.

Creating opportunities for students to engage in historical thinking should not be viewed as taking time away from teaching the content. Historical thinking offers students the opportunity to make stronger connections with the content and apply their learning to better understand history and the world today.
Assistant Principal
High
As an administrator observing history classrooms, I will assess how teachers apply historical thinking in their classrooms.
Teacher
Elementary
I am currently teaching reading, but pulling in historical references and sources is a great way to build comprehension as well as learning how to ask questions about a text. I can easily see presenting a theme or historical event that the students are familiar with as the day's topic and instead of reading passages, allowing student to read through multiple documents from a variety of sources that will help spark a discussion about perspective and the intention behind the author's creation. By also focusing on a historical event they are familiar with, we can also discuss how some accounts that are read differ from what is commonly known or believed about that time period - as well as discuss why that might be the case. Is it faulty description? Skewed perspective? Hearsay? This will all be a good spring board for later investigations where students might not have the background knowledge to pick out popular belief versus historical fact.
The civll War (War between the States)
Elementary
Use books from the library on figures such as Frederick Douglas, John Brown ,Robert E. Lee , Abraham Lincoln, and many others. Find as many different authors or view points on time before the war, during and afterwards. Have the students read, compare the different authors, look for similarities, differences and viewpoints and the dates they were written.. Any effects on us today from this time periods . possibly have the students make oral reports, or role playing to demonstrate what they have learned, could even make charts or draw life size figures and dress them in time period clothes and write 10 statements about the person and their invovlement,
Fourth Grade Lesson
Elementary
I would have students compare and contrast a Harriet Tubman wanted poster with the letter written to her from Frederick Douglas. I would ask the students to use the different points of view to form their own opinion about Harriet Tubman's character.
Mrs. Schetter
Elementary
I would give my students a primary source to analyze. I would give them an open ended question and task them with finding the answer within the source. I would have students use SCIM-C to find the answer and analyze the source. I would love to have this be a small group assignment and encourage conversation while exploring and analyzing the source.
Learning about the past
Elementary
The children will be given maps from different primary sources. They will do a Venn diagram to put down similarities and differences in the maps. They will be given letters, newspaper articles, documents to create a second Venn diagram to evaluate similarities and differences in these sources.
Thinking historically
Elementary
To ensure students receive various points of view, I would ensure I presented them with an array of readings, primary sources accounts, along with the historical narrative so that they may consider all sides of the situation. I try to relate what the students are learning back to their own lives so that they can imagine being confronted with historical situations and grapple with the difficult choices people in the past may have faced. It's also important to include the context of the time that helped shape people's decisions. I like the idea of teaching students how to think like a historian and presenting them ideas, along with text and primary source accounts, to explore like people in the field have to do.
4th Grade General Education Teacher
Elementary
I really love the SCIM-C method. It would be a great method to incorporate as we study important Virginia documents and how they contributed to national documents. I'll be eager to dig up additional sources for students to analyze along with the Constitution, Bill of Rights, and Declaration of Independence.
Thinking Historically: Module 1
High
While this introductory module was generally a review for me, it is always good to re-examine the how and why of the material with share with students year after year. It is never good to get into a rut in this profession. I think any teacher who fails to modify and update lesson plans (even the stuff that we know works) is a teacher who is not upholding the professional and personal responsibility of being a lifelong learner. So I appreciate that already after the first module, this course has allowed me to revisit some of the foundational principles of historical thinking.

Again, I enjoyed Dr. Hicks' overview of the SCIM-C method and will look to employ that more often in the future. It was also helpful to see a new take on a document (John Smith map) that I have often used in the past.

Of course, while the end of the pandemic may be in sight, the question for all teachers in the era of Covid, is how to adapt these ideas about thinking historically to the remote/virtual/hybrid classroom. I look forward in the weeks ahead to exploring new ideas about thinking historically in the virtual classroom. While schools may return to "normal" this fall, I believe the virtual classroom in one form or another is here to stay.
Historical Thinking in the Elementary Classroom
Elementary
To apply historical thinking in my classroom, I plan to provide more primary sources to be analyzed. I will offer my students multiple accounts and perspectives of the past in hopes to have them better understand the past. With my students engaging directly with the past, they will be able to focus more on the "how" and "why" of the past as opposed to the "what" or the "who" or even the "when".
SPED Teacher
Middle
As a special education teacher, it is my job to work with the history teacher to plan activities (advanced and modified) that will have our students thinking like a historian. We would do this by activating their prior knowledge, summarizing, reflecting, interpreting, and asking questions while using primary and secondary sources. Using those sources helps students generate ideas about what life was like in the past, how they lived, how they thought, and what kind of things engaged them. And ultimately, how history has shaped the world they live in today.
Application for Historical Thinking
Elementary
The use of KWL charts will be a tool for introducing the subject matter to the students. The SCIM-C method will be used to allow students to dig deep into the research of the subject.
4th Grade Teacher
Elementary
I thoroughly enjoy bringing history to life during Virginia Studies time in my classroom. I would like to use this new understanding of "thinking historically" by providing my students with more opportunities to view and analyze primary sources. I would like to use the SCIM-C method to scaffold my students in historical thinking to allow them to develop a deeper understanding of the topics we learn about in the classroom.
K-W-L Chart
Elementary
Either as a whole class, or individually, spend time before a new unit completing a K-W-L chart. This activity can identify background knowledge, create a space for questioning that will drive understanding, and a place for reflection.
Historical Thinking
Middle
I'm currently teaching my World Geography class about the American Revolution. I'm going to have my students read part of the Declaration of Independence and the ad for Jefferson's runaway slave. Students will answer the question What kind of person was Thomas Jefferson? I plan on finding a few other sources to have the students look at to determine their answers.

I plan on having students look pictures of artifacts. I will have the students use the SCIM-C model to determine the importance of the artifact.

There is so much a history teacher can use to have students think historically.
Thinking Historically
Elementary
I am looking forward to using more primary sources in my fourth grade classroom. I plan to use many primary sources as I teach the Civil War unit. I will use personal accounts from a confederate soldier and a union soldier. I will have my students compare the two accounts using the SCIM-C process.
4th grade
Elementary
Students create a KWL chart about African American's role during the Civil War. Provide students with two primary source accounts (one free African American one slave) and have them analyze their roles. Students will share their findings with small groups so that they can have constructive conversations and learn from each other. Provide students another primary source from a white slave owning Virginian. Have students analyze this information and add to their KWL chart.
Historical Thinking in a 5th Grade Classroom
Elementary
Historical thinking is something that I do include within my classroom regularly. I accomplish this through partnership with the gifted resource teacher, as well as my collection of primary and secondary sources. Students are exposed to multiple sources and asked to determine what the sources are telling them, as well as their importance. I focus on the main theme of perspectives- I believe that teaching students to look through someone else's lens, even if it's something we disagree with, allows us to better understand situations. However, based off of what I viewed today, I would like to develop a more consistent analysis process. While I'd heard/seen SCIM before, it is not something I've actively used. I could see using the guiding questions from SCIM to help guide students in their analysis.
Special Education History Teacher
High
I have gotten several ideas for project to help my student explore and understand past events. In my US History class I may want to have students research documents from the time of the civil rights movement from both side of the issue and compare them to resources of civil rights issue today.
I particularly like the wanted article from Thomas Jefferson looking for a run away slave. It would be interesting see how they interpret this document compared to what he writes in the Declaration of Independence.
The map exercise for the 4th grade class was very informative as well. I think this would be a great activity to do in a geography class or when studying ancient civilizations in WHI.
Indian Language Groups
Elementary
Part of the SOLs we have to "instruct" our students is the three Indian Language Groups of Virginia. I teach my kids songs to remember the name of the three groups as well as examples of tribes that belonged to each group. We discuss a little about each tribe but we do not go in depth. I would like to have my students split into groups and within each group assign partners to research, on previously sourced material that I provide, about each language group, what tribes were part of it, what was important to each tribe as for food, trade, cultural activities.
Gilded Age Dinner Party
Middle
Students will be tasked with creating a seating arrangement for the leaders and significant figures of the Gilded Age. A basic understanding and outline of each person will be provided. Students will then be given a collection of resources about the various figures to read and learn more. While doing their own research they will be given modified KWL charts to complete for the various "dinner guests" to help them develop a greater historical thinking of both the person and the time period they were living in. Once students have completed their research they will seat the various guests in "pairs" around a dinner table. The pairs should be assigned based on what types of conversations they would like their guests to have, something which students will explain in writing to conclude the project. The goal of this project is two fold - to have students practice historical thinking by adding to their own knowledge of the various Gilded Age figures with the help of primary sources, and to "do" by taking that knowledge and applying it to a problem.
Letters of the Civil War
Elementary
I could gather multiple letters from all different people of the Civil War (confederate soldiers, union soldiers, Native Americans, young kids, and others) the students could use the SCIM-C method to analysis these letters and get a better insight of what the daily struggles were during the war. How certain groups felt about the war.
"I Have A Dream"
Middle
Depending on the time of year, one of the first activities I would try with primarily middle school students (but could be used easily with high school students) would be to examine Dr. Martin Luther King's "I have a Dream" speech. I would employ the KWL chart to have students write what they think they already know about this event, which, amazingly, is very little on a widespread basis. A class discussion could help young brains awaken.

I would then distribute a complete transcript of the letter,with time and place, etc attached, having students read it, write notes on it, etc. Under the W section of their chart, questions should be jotted down. I would probably read the speech aloud after this step and have students continue to fill in the W section on their charts. Depending on the level of the class, I would discuss any questions as to the meaning of the speech. I would be sure to guide students in a structured manner, but I would allow for pertinent free thinking. I would begin to introduce important facts concerning time, place, meaning, etc. Students should use the speech and its outlined information to fill in the L section of the chart. Once I feel the class has dissected the speech adequately, I would play a live recorded version so that his voice, the audience, etc. could be heard, adding to the relevance of the speech. Any information that is picked up from listening to the recorded speech, could be added to the L portion of their charts. Guided discussion on its relevance would wrap up the class. For the next day's assignment, I would have students summarize the speech, including its relevance to time and place. More research could be done via internet or text. The closing portion of the writing assignment could ask why this speech, this man, etc was so important, then and now. Students could also include any questions they would like to know more about in a final paragraph.

I think an activity like this could be invaluable in learning more about a man that is honored with a holiday, but that so many people know so very little about. The dissection of such a famous speech could clarify many important questions, and it should definitely lead to more.
Primary Resources over textbook
Elementary
This module made me reflect on the materials I use when teaching social studies/history in my classroom. Our textbook covers all the major units for 3rd grade SOLs, but each area is covered in only 2-3 pages of the text book. Those 2-3 pages only cover the big ideas and basic facts of events/people in history. I would like to start teaching each of the major grade level skills using primary resources. I would like my students to be able to dig through those resources to make the big connections on their own. Having students compare multiple resources about the same person/event will help them understand the context of the time and how individual perspectives shape the narrative of our history. When we teach strictly from our textbook, we are teaching our students that our history is only a collection of basic facts that are inherently true because the textbook says so. I would like to provide my students with accounts of historical events that contradict each other, so that they can understand how much the bias of the material influences our perspective. This will help students make connection about how history is more than just one fact or detail.
Belt Driven Mechanisms in Factories and it's Effects on Increased Production
Middle
In my STEM class, which must include historical developments of mechanized elements, I would place various belts or bands in students hands as part of a design build to show the development of machines that began as single belt drives (such as a foot levered sewing machine without a motor) to how these belt drives quickly became the lengths of factory floors during the Industrial Revolution. With the onset of motor driven ones, the issues came along concerning worker safety, and of course production pressures as humans were pushed to their limits to keep up with the speed of production controlled by the workers bosses.
Documents in Elementary School.
Elementary
As a first year teacher, I am learning as much as my children are this year. My students are struggling with the difference in the "declaration of rights" and the "statute for religious freedom" I think I am going to back track and actually print out copies of the documents for them to explore. I will bring in more primary texts, rather than just telling them what they say and do.
How do we know?
Elementary
Sourcing: how do we get the stories we are reading, how would some recount this story that lived in a different colony, what is the perspective of the colonist, natives, Africans. Where are the biased. Review articles and videos to compare and create opinions.
Historical Thinking
Middle
For middle school students, I would give students multiple primary sources and have them work collaboratively with a partner or small group to analyze the documents using the KWL and SCIM-C strategies. You could even post the SCIM-C strategy in the classroom so it becames a "standard" practice for students to analyze. Ask students questions that have them investigate the source but also have them pose questions. Students should be able to journal what they are discussing in their groups and to make notes about the whole group discussion. It would be great if students kept an ongoing journal with the copies of their primary sources and notes. It would be a great way for them to reflect on events and their growth in their ability to think historically.
Mr. Stinson: Third Grade Teacher
Elementary
Our class is currently studying Galileo and the transition from geocentric theory to heliocentric theory. The students were having difficulty understanding why the Church was having a such a hard time believing Galileo's theory. To them, the sun has always been the center of the universe and they could not fathom why Galileo was condemned to his house for telling the truth and trying to teach others about his discoveries. If I could find primary sources written about this event in Galileo's life, I could provide them with better insight as to why people reacted the way they did. By understanding the connection between the church and its scriptures, students would better understand how people became so upset with these new discoveries and way of thinking.
E. Greenway
Elementary
I think giving students more opportunity to work with primary sources is really important as it develops critical thinking skills. Having students (4th/5th grade level) complete SCIM-C is really beneficial for drawing more accurate conclusions of historical events versus trusting a textbooks interpretation of the events for them. Students will also more likely remember the content having dug and researched for themselves versus having it done for them (via reading in a textbook). I think giving students a map to interpret or a eye-witness account to read would be something that would be easy to do in the classroom and could replace reading from the textbook.
Teacher
Elementary
I would honestly ask more open ended questions versus right or wrong answers. Allowing students to use their own interpretations will allow them to want to explore more about a topic they are interested in. I feel this may spark their curiosity outside the classroom (going to the library once a week) rather than having to learn a specific standard and regurgitate the information that has no relevance to them.
How to Not Refight a Civil War
Middle
Using political cartoons about violence toward Freedmen during Reconstruction, and the text of the 14th Amendment, I would ask students to develop an understanding of the civil rights guaranteed therein, and the Ku Klux Klan Act of 1871, which provided for enforcement of the amendment.
Elementary Teacher
Elementary
I think that from what I have learned in this first module I can start applying some of the aspects of historical thinking immediately into the way in which questioning is used during instruction. I am brainstorming ways on how I can do it virtually, as that is currently how I am teaching, but even more excited to think of the possibilities when we are in person. I can see myself accessing copies of the primary sources to put into students' hands, while using those sources to guide the students collaboratively through the SCIM-C method. I also think the steps and the questions associated with each of the SCIM-C steps would be a perfect addition to our "We Are Historians" bulletin board, as well as, the first page in their notebooks when we start the year. I think using this process with a primary source related to a unit we are introducing will provide student generated questions to guide our instruction during the unit. I think this will provide a deeper level of engagement from students as they are now more active participants in the process.
Government
High
One way to apply historical thinking in Government is to have students read various news accounts about a current event. The accounts should include different perspectives and be from multiple avenues such as newspapers, cable news, and media websites. By having them read an account of a current event from different sources, they can verify the facts, gain different perspectives, and use this information to formulate an understanding through their critical thinking skills.
Teacher
Middle
Education should be about thinking; students need to think in order to learn. Application of historical thinking in my classroom would be to implement questioning throughout every activity possible. Questions about the facts. Questions that lead to inferences. Questions that lead to more questions. Questions that lead to making connections and finding purpose in today's world.
Teacher
High
I think on the high school level, the SCIM-C method would work better for me in interpreting historical documents. These are all skills we teach in the upper level classes, and they can serve the lower classes as well. In any history discipline they will need to know summarization skills, and contextualization is extremely important. Inference of what a source might suggest can help tie sources together with what they know, and monitoring can help them understand the significance of a source. The KWL method might not work so well in the 11th grade classroom, but I feel could be used with honors level classes. This could work especially well in scenarios where students have little understanding of history.
3rd Grade Teacher- Thinking Historically
Elementary
I am eager to try the SCIM-C scaffold within my classroom. My school will be starting hybrid learning again next week, and I will be able to provide my students with primary resources. I want to use primary resources in my Social Studies time. I have been so focused on teaching the basics virtually to my students that I am missing the critical thinking in my lessons. I don't want to just keep my head above water with hybrid/virtual learning. I want to thrive as a teacher and still enable my students to have those real world connections with history.
How did slavery shape Virginia?
Middle
I would present students a picture or article and present my question. Then I would ask them to come up with their own questions. I would also provide secondary documents and then ask the students evaluate these sources use these to provide evidence for their answers, to think like a detective.
World History
High
This concept really helps me put into reality something I've told my students all along, but didn't have the vocabulary to put it out there. I've always told my students its not history that's important, it is the process of thinking that is. To that end, I will look to my next class activity in the context of the process of thinking. Working with the idea of what I am looking at, what is the time that this took place, why was the action taken and how did that affect life moving forward into today. This is how I will apply these ideas to my classroom. I like this approach rather than how can I show understanding of the material.
WH 2 European Imperialism Illustrations
High
Putting students into pairs, they will work together to create two illustrations, one from the perspective of an imperial power and the other from the perspective of a colonized nation. Using a guide sheet with some prompting questions, the students will read an accompanying primary source, and look at a slide show of photographs and political cartoons to help them create their illustrations.
Example: The Belgian Congo
Read excerpts from “An Open Letter to His Serene Majesty Leopold II”, by George W. Williams.
Then, look at photographs and political cartoons from the Belgian Congo.
Collect information on your guide sheet.
Draw 2 illustrations, one from the imperial perspective and one from the subjugated peoples.
Classroom Connection
High
I have already started implementing some of the strategies from Module 1 into my VA/US History class this week. In analyzing primary source material this week, I started with guiding questions that allowed the students to act as "detectives" and discuss their initial thoughts, reactions, and questions. This strategy encouraged student engagement and fostered student-led thinking within the activity. I also went back and revised my approach in teaching historical thinking. When we would reach questions that required specific skills, I would review the skills with students and ask them which specific skill would work best for the questions we are trying to answer. This approach seemed to revive my primary source activities!
Industrial Revolution
High
To provide the students will an understanding of the working conditions during the Industrial Revolution I would determine the students prior knowledge of the Industrial Revolution using the KWL chart. To facilitate a discussion of the Industrial period I would use SCIM-C to have students analyze primary source documents from women, children and employers in order to answer the driving question were textile factories bad for the health of English workers?
The Revolutionary War
Elementary
I would get copies of the Declaration of Independence for students to look at and examine. I would guide questions to certain words and compare what the document is saying to how the colonists are being treated. By the end of the lesson, students would know that the Declaration of Independence stated the reasons why we wanted to break free and start our own country rather than continue to be ruled by the King.
4th Grade Teacher
Elementary
We are currently teaching about Virginians In The Revolution. I think looking at primary sources relating to the Boston Massacre and the Boston Tea Party and it effect on stoking the fires of independence in the colonies would be a good start. Having students look at primary sources such as newspaper articles that offer opposing views to flesh out the facts and understand there is more to the story than The British were the bad guys. Looking at the trial of the English soldiers and showing the students that John Adams, a Founding Father and future president, defended the soldiers. Getting them to ask questions about why he would do that and to dig deeper into the event to come to their own evidence based conclusions.
Principal
Elementary
I would look for these types of activities to be evident in teacher planning and student engagement. I would encourage teachers to reach out to historical societies and other resources to help develop authentic opportunities for analyzing resources.
The beginning of the new world
Elementary
I would have my students read multiple sources of information from different types of people that talk about their experience of coming to the the new world. I would look for letters, diary post, and reports which were used to report back to England about the trip and choice of landing spot in Virginia. This will open my students to different experiences of the settlers and give them a broader view of the experience.
Have students examine primary sources about what factors moved the U.S. into WWI
High
In 7th grade I found a lot of emphasis on the sinking of the Lusitania as to why the U.S. entered the war. However, checking dates from primary resources such as newsreels it can be seen that the Lusitania was sunk 2 years prior to the Zimmerman Telegram, which triggered the U.S. to declare war on Germany only two weeks after its discovery, with the help of information provided by the British, who were all too eager for the U.S. to join them in the war against Germany.
EL Specialist
K-12
I can use the SCIM C technique to teach my English Language Learners about historical events.
Unpacking the US Constitution
Middle
As a Civics teacher, I am always looking for ways to help students unpack the US Constitution, and the influences that led to the creation of this document. To help them establish a better understanding of our nation's foundations, I would like to try having students establish a hypothesis about what kind of nation they think we are (democracy, land of the free, etc.), then apply the SCIM-C scaffolding to the US Constitution and other founding documents (Articles of Confederation, Declaration of Independence, Charters of the VA Company of London) to gather evidence to explain how they know that, why it matters, and if they would like to change their original hypothesis.
Module 1 Classroom Connection - Matt Schoener
Middle
I really like the idea of having students look at a historical event from the perspective of "both sides." This first module really made me reflect on the idea that "history is written by the winning team." It would be a good step to provide more than one perspective and teach kids to take time to understand the source THEN "listen" to what they have to say.
Why did the settlers trade with the Native Americans?
Elementary
I would ask my 4th grade students "Why did the Settlers trade with the Native Americans?" If the natives were the Settlers, and the Settlers were scared of them, why did they decide to trade with the? Was it to make money? To have nicer things? Why?
Adam Hartless
High
As a Government Teacher, students are more than willing to express their opinion on topics that are discussed in class. One take away from this module I can use moving forward is to begin with their thoughts on the topic and then have them research primary sources to challenge or reinforce their hypothesis.
Mrs. Cassandra Mastarone
Elementary
I could have students look at pictures and maps of things that happened in that time period or for that event and see what they might get from those images and compare it to documentation that is either read to them or is an easy read depending on that year's reading level since I teach second grade. I would pose a question to them to help guide them and see what they come up with and if they come up with any other questions. If they pose some deep thoughts we can continue to look at it and deeper into it to answer their own questions. We would have class discussions and could debate our findings.
World History
High
I can have lessons using both the techniques I thought of and the ones in the module. I can have the students think about "What If" scenarios to predict what would happen if one aspect had been different. They can then act like detectives to analyze what actually happened, asking questions and debating about the various outcomes.
Apply Historical thinking in my classroom
High
I am an art teacher, with this subject history research is a major part of creating art. Using the historical context, and political motivated times in which artist were creating explains so much in the story of Art History. Having critiques of artwork and the student interpretation, as well as the historical events happening at the time, Art really helps tell the story. I usually explain WHAT was happening during a creative process around the artist, but thinking of introducing a timeline, and geographic as well as political, religious happening at the time would help students connect the dots between Art and History so much deeper.Therefore understand the art story, meaning and importance in history much deeper. Seeing Picassos Guernica and knowing the whole story of that small farm town and its night massacre, makes a difference.
Historical Thinking in the Classroom
Elementary
Analyze various viewpoints from primary sources concerning the causes of the Civil War
Historical Thinking in the Classroom
Elementary
Analyze various viewpoints from primary sources concerning the causes of the Civil War
Reconstruction
Elementary
I would want to use what I have learned about historical thinking for a lesson on the problems in Virginia during Reconstruction. The format from the two videos in the resource section where the teacher used the John Smith map would be the same one I would like to follow. The use of primary resources, the K-W-L strategy, partner collaboration, and whole group discussion helps to develop historical thinking. It would be good to use the SCIM-C method to learn all they can from the primary sources provided. The students would be asked for any similarities/differences from that period compared to present time.
Teacher
Elementary
I would create a KWL chart of the current historical event or concept being taught. I would then use one hand manipulatives, videos, whole group discussions, and small group activities to complete the W and L columns of the chart.
Understanding Expansion
High
In my World Geography classroom, students look at colonization and the effects of it on various regions of the world. To promote historical thinking and better understand the topic, I could have students look at accounts and primary sources regarding various examples of expansion and colonization. There's many images that were used by the United States and European nations to promote Manifest Destiny and the Scramble for Africa respectively. Likewise, there are many detailed accounts of those who were the colonizers and expansionists, as well those were targeted by these expanding nations. Using the SCIM-C method, students in groups could analyze some of these images and sources to understand the events that took place, but also why they happened and how people on both sides were impacted. Students would collaborate and discuss the sources together, building teamwork and communication skills while also enhancing their understanding. Having analyzed these multiple viewpoints and perspectives, students might then individually prepare a short paper or perhaps a Powerpoint presentation on their findings and conclusions. To further promote creativity and further engage students, they could be tasked to create political cartoons to summarize and depict the events and the views of those involved.

Looking at and analyzing primary sources like this could also make for great warm-up or closing activities. Even doing smaller primary source analysis tasks can build their critical thinking and analysis skills, while also adding further context to the big picture and content of the unit being studied.
Classroom Connections
Elementary
Our students are living in a world that is centered around social media. Many of them are quick to believe the first account that they view. I would use activities that would highlight the importance of verifying the credibility of witness accounts. Activities that teach them how to find multiple sources and compare them in order to make an informed decision would prove very helpful in building their historical thinking.
VA Studies- 4th grade
Elementary
A good way to apply this would be to introduce units by showing students different sources and let them ask questions and make inferences about the topic. I would also like to give students more time to be critical thinkers.
Teacher
High
Analyzing and synthesizing primary sources is a proven way to help students think historically. Artifacts and photos are a great starter in getting most High School students excited about that which is being studied. Keeping my students interested and asking more and more questions is my goal. Focusing on the "How?" questions of history is something that I can apply immediately and daily in the classroom.
Describing everyday life in colonial Virginia (VS.4)
Elementary
In order for students to gain an understanding of everyday life in colonial Virginia I can do the following in my classroom:
1. Students will work in cooperative group to determine the roles of various colonial Virginians.
-Ask the students what jobs they have at home. Discuss their jobs and those of their parents and other family members. Ask the students how these jobs might be different from those in colonial Virginia. Ask them how they think everyday life was different for whites and enslaved African Americans in colonial Virginia.
-Begin my lesson by telling students that most people in colonial Virginia at the time of the American Revolution lived on small farms. Then I'll divide the class into four groups. I'll explain to each group that they will read and analyze a different Student Handout about the role of one of the following groups: men, women, children, or enslaved people in colonial Virginia. Then each group will report on what they found.
-After giving out the Student Handout to each group I will also include a K-W-L graphic organizer with the questions (What was everyday life like in colonial Virginia?) Students will read their passage and look at the photographs.
To determine students understanding I will have them write a journal entry comparing life in colonial Virginia to life in Virginia today.
Ms. Walters
Elementary
I can expand on students prior knowledge to gauge there understanding of past experiences. In the classroom, students will conduct research, analyze pictures, artifacts, videos and textbooks to seek out information.
Who Discovered Oxygen?
High
Show the video from the PBS series The Mystery of Matter: Antoine Lavoisier: Father of Modern Chemistry. It has historical context from the 1790's and references textual accounts from both Joseph Priestley and Lavoisier. Ask the students to decide who should get credit for the discovery of oxygen or if credit for such a discovery is even relevant.
Teacher, Cross Cat SPED
High
I have applied many of these techniques to teaching history. I was never a big fan of lists of boring facts and figures, and I swore long ago that I would never teach history out of a textbook I hadn't written. It took a lot of work and research, but I was able to develop interesting lesson using excerpts from primary documents, video, audio, and literature as well as accounts from the "other side." Going forward, I would like to work with students to help them independently analyze more of the text and history, making sure they focus more on audience. I worked hard to give the a sense of time, place, and other views, but my weakest area was probably giving them the information rather than letting them acquire it independently.
Historical Thinking- More than Just History
Elementary
Now more than ever, it is more important that students are critical thinkers who know how to evaluate information and its source. They do not need to memorize endless lists of people, places, and dates. Practicing historical thinking will aid them with this. They will learn to generate and consider questions, and then explore resources that they analyze and synthesize to gain understanding of the world around them. To do this, teachers will need to guide them in exploring primary resources that they read closely and then consider what the source is, who created it, the context surrounding it and consider different view points. This will allow them to figure out causation for events, their significance, and how things change over time. We need to change examining history to be about how, not what. This is our duty as educators to create informed citizens- or even better, citizens who can inform themselves.
Historical Thinking- More than Just History
Elementary
Now more than ever, it is more important that students are critical thinkers who know how to evaluate information and its source. They do not need to memorize endless lists of people places and dates. Practicing historical thinking will aid them with this. They will learn to generate and consider questions, and then explore resources that they analyze and synthesize to gain understanding of the world around them. To do this, teachers will need to guide them in exploring primary resources that they read closely and then consider what the source is, who created it, the context surrounding it and consider different view points. This will allow them to figure out causation for events, their significance, and how things change over time. We need to change examining history to be about how, not what. This is our duty as educators to create informed citizens- or even better, citizens who can inform themselves.
Historical Thinking- More than Just History
Elementary
Now more than ever, t is more important that students are critical thinkers who know how to evaluate information and its source. They do not need to memorize endless lists of people places and dates. Practicing historical thinking will aid them with this. They will learn to generate and consider questions, and then explore resources that they analyze and synthesize to gain understanding of the world around them. To do this, teachers will need to guide them in exploring primary resources that they read closely and then consider what the source is, who created it, the context surrounding it and consider different view points. This will allow them to figure out causation for events, their significance, and how things change over time. We need to change examining history to be about how, not what. This is our duty as educators to create informed citizens- or even better, citizens who can inform themselves.
Teacher
Elementary
I would definitely give my students less background information. I would instead give more primary resources and have them complete more investigation into background knowledge and have them come up with questions they would like to investigate. I now realize that I taught more but should have had students think and discover more on their own.
Applying Historical Thinking
Middle
Now that I know more about historical thinking, there are ways in which I can apply this in my classroom. First, you should know that I am certified to teach social studies, but I am currently a sixth grade English teacher. Even though I do not teach history classes now, students can still learn and apply historical thinking in English.
I can introduce students to activities that involve historical thinking and it could be a perspective lesson, which is an English SOL. Students can learn what perspective means and how to question circumstances in order to think in other perspectives.
Students can use historical thinking when doing research for reports. If students know how to question, think critically, and use primary resources they will be better researchers. Students will know what types of information to look for in their research and they will know which type of information may be biased or not. Students will then be able to write a well rounded report of their findings.
Unit 6 Building a New Nation
Elementary
After watching a video on one of our founding fathers, Students will be placed in pairs and can be given two different Primary articles on the founding father written in a different perspective. Students come up with a list of questions they have related to the two articles. Students then gather as small groups to ask one another their questions. The teacher walks the room to listen in on the conversations and ask questions. Students then come together as a whole group to discuss certain facts and questions that students have. Students write what they learned today in an exit ticket.
Analyzing Political Cartoons based on the US Involvement in World War One
High
Political cartoons are vivid primary sources that offer intriguing and entertaining insights into the public mood, the underlying cultural assumptions of an age, and attitudes toward key events or trends of the times. Since the 18th century, political cartoons have offered a highly useful window into the past. Just about every school history textbook now has its quota of political cartoons. Yet some studies reveal that substantial percentages of adults fail to understand the political cartoons in their daily newspaper. How much harder then must it be for young people to make sense of cartoons from the distant past?

The stark, simple imagery of many cartoons can be highly deceptive. The best cartoons express real conceptual complexity in a single drawing and a few words. Cartoons from the 1700s and 1800s often employ archaic language, elaborate dialogue, and obscure visual references. It takes a good deal of knowledge of the precise historical context to grasp such cartoons.

In short, political cartoons employ complex visual strategies to make a point quickly in a confined space. Teachers must help students master the language of cartoons if they are to benefit from these fascinating sources of insight into our past.

Show students the Zimmerman Telegraph political cartoon and discuss.

Next, Divide the class into two groups.

1. Ask one group to discuss cartoon A: The Gap in the Bridge and agree on a one-sentence explanation of each cartoon.
2. Ask the second group to do the same for the cartoon B: Versailles Political Cartoon “Train Station”.

Stress that political cartoons are not like the comics. They are about social and political issues, and they express strongly held viewpoints about those issues. Emphasize that it is impossible to fully understand most political cartoons without some background knowledge of the issues they deal with. This is a preparatory exercise, so don't apply too strict a standard to judging what students come up with. The goal is to have them make initial interpretations on their own to see what that entails.

Have each group present its cartoons and explanations. Ask students to list any cartoon details they do not understand. Discuss whether their confusion is due to a lack of background knowledge or to something unclear about the cartoon itself.

Finally, discuss the challenges of understanding historical cartoons as compared to the challenges of understanding contemporary political cartoons.

Explain that political cartoons use a special "language" to make strong points about complex issues in a single visual display. Various visual and (usually) written details convey a "message" designed to sway the reader.
Special Education Instructor
Middle
Begin the class with a bell ringer to open their minds to what subject we are going to investigate. Provide students with multiple sources to read, listen to, watch, or observe to gain a perspective on the subject. Create a Venn Diagram of at least 2 sources. Group discussion and evaluation. Conclusion and determination of collective effort of the subject content.
Connections
Elementary
The more realia you can bring into the classroom, the more interest you can instill in the students. It will often cause them to become "scientists" of History as they begin to ask questions about the item
Literacy Specialist
Division Employee
Currently, my position is Division Literacy Specialist for Middlesex Public Schools, so I am not in the classroom. I hope to use the knowledge and resources gained in this course to provide PD to teachers on ways to apply historical thinking skills in their classrooms. As we continue to move away from the "teaching to an SOL Test" mindset, I would also like to see teachers shift their instruction, as well. Rather than focusing on memorizing content, let's instead provide opportunities for students develop thinking skills that will support them in all content areas. I hope to develop PD and classroom resources that help teachers with this shift.
Mr.
High
I have used the KWL charts in class, as well as the analysis and answering questions of primary sources-usually readings. I could expand that to include SCIM-Cs where appropriate. Post-Covid, I hope to get back to conducting field trips to local museums and such in order to help students examine artifacts and get a better sense of the "realness" of history, that it is more than pages in a textbook, that it really happened, and that it impacts our lives today.
teacher
Elementary
I would place less emphasis on what happened and focus on why it happened. Ask more critical thinking types of questions that make students look at different perspectives of those involved. Use more primary sources to give students insight on what the people of the time actually felt about the situation.
Historical Figures
Elementary
I teach a fifth grade classroom. The students enjoy doing activities that are hands on. I would start with the KWL strategy with historical pictures, maps, clothing, objects, and get students to connect to their prior knowledge.
I would have the students role play a figure from virginia history that they have studies various sources and have analyzed to help them investigate their figure and have the other students ask questions like a historian. They would absolutely love it!!
Teacher
Elementary
I would find primary sources to bring in to get the kids thinking about the past. The class would construct a KWL chart. There will be activities and videos to enhance their learning. Open-ended questions to get them thinking and researching.
Using Historical thinking
Middle
I really liked the SCIM method and would like to help students use that to help break down primary sources. Also by making available sources that speak about the event from different perspectives so students can begin to learn that different groups have different experiences from the same event.

I think RAFT activities do a nice job of trying to create students to begin to think from different perspectives and is a nice jumping off place to have those conservations.
Teacher
High
One way to apply this would be during our unit discussing westward expansion in the US, and he concept of "Manifest Destiny". A variety of sources would could be analyzed using the SCIM-C method, and then compared to gain a fuller understanding of the topic.
Students could analyze and compart text about expansion, like that of John O'Sullivan who is credited with coining the term manifest destiny, a statement from president Polk or another political figure, and the painting American Progress with Indian Removal Policies and accounts from Native American Tribes. This would give them an understanding of what motivated expansion, as well as the immediate affects it had on different groups of people and the long term implications of that.
Using the SCIM-C method, along with guiding discussion questions, would allow them to individually analyze each source used and then compare them to form a deeper understanding of this time rather than simply recalling names, dates, and events.
The Declaration of Indepdence
Dual Enrollment U.S. History
I teach a bunch of Dual Enrollment classes at Strasburg High School but my favorite class is Dual Enrollment U.S. History. One way I could make my students think like a historian is have them read documents from fellow Enlightenment thinkers like John Locke, Rousseau and Montesquieu and while they are reading highlight words, sayings or phrases that sound familiar. I can then lead my students in group/whole group discussion as to what their philosophy was towards government. Lastly, I could have my students read the Declaration of Independence and lead them into a group/whole group discussion of how and why the Enlightenment Thinkers influenced Thomas Jefferson in the writing of the Declaration of Independence. These thinkers will also come up again in discussion when we reach the Constitution further on down the unit.
Classroom Teacher
Elementary
I am thinking of a lesson that I could create during the study of the Jamestown Colony. I have copies of primary sources illustrating a Native American man's clothing and accessories. I have another that shows the same of a typical English soldier and an English gentleman. My guiding question could be how the clothing and accessories that each man carried related to the environment in which he lived and how the stye of dress and these items affected the success of each of the groups at early Jamestown. The students could use the cross-curricular knowledge they have of natural resources from science units, as well as information learned earlier in the year about the attributes of the regions of Virginia as they analyze the documents and make their determinations. I believe that this would allow the students to better compare and contrast the two cultures and also lead them to understand the cause and effect nature of the early events of Jamestown.
Inclusion of historical objects
Middle
When I teach early American history, we study the primary documents that laid the foundation for American politics. We look for phrases that we understand and underline ones that are not familiar so we can puzzle them out together.
During the American Civil War, I bring in objects and the students come up with ideas of what the object might be and what it was used for. Students are allowed to provide any hypothesis as long as they can explain their thinking. I also let them hold the object so they can have a tangible connection to that period of history.
5th Grade Teacher
Elementary
I would like to get more primary sources for my classroom so that I can show my students these sources and we can bring to life people from different time periods. I think it will help them to read something or see something that was actually created by a person in the time period we learn about rather than just a textbook article or reading passage.
The Myth of Columbus
High
Using Christopher Columbus' compiled journals from the late 15th century, I will have the students read excerpts that they will then use to present to the class to develop a picture of whether or not Columbus was actually successful on his journeys to the New World
Immigration
Middle
Examine historical documents to see what life would be like for an immigrant coming in to Ellis Island .
Virginia Studies
Elementary
I plan to utilize what I have learned about historical thinking in my classroom. I will use primary source documents to have my students think like detectives and also corroborate ideas with facts. I will use both the K-W-L and SCIM-C methods with my students.
Historical Thinking to help foster Critical Thinking!
Elementary
Historical thinking doesn't just apply to the history classroom, but is an essential life and academic skill for all facets of life. It is important to facilitate higher level thinking and encourage to question the world around them. Beyond putting artifacts in their hands and asking open-ended questions, it's asking them to challenge what is presented to them and consider the how and why of every scenario. In my classroom, we focus a lot of time on how the colonists came to America and why Jamestown was settled, but I think we could spend more time discussing what life in Europe looked like to make them choose to leave. Who were these people? Why did they leave? Why didn't they give up when faced with the many hardships?
Historical Thinking in the Classroom
Elementary
I might apply this to my classroom by encouraging students to ask questions about events that have occurred in the past. I would also incorporate activities that allow students to see historical events from more than one perspective such as reenactments and role playing. Students would also benefit from having information presented from multiple sources in order to become historical "investigators."
Abraham Lincoln: Historical Fact vs. Fiction
High
In this activity, we would use historical thinking while comparing historical documents to discern fact from fiction regarding Abraham Lincoln.

There is so much that we have learned about Abraham Lincoln since elementary school, but how much of that is myth rather than fact? I would pose this question to my students.

Having already created a K-W-L chart on the board or wall using washi tape, I would give every student three large sticky notes of different colors. On the first color of sticky note, I would ask students to write down the prior knowledge they have about Abraham Lincoln and come up and place their sticky notes under “K” on the chart. I would read all the notes and discuss any common themes.

With any historical figure, we rely on the resources presented to us to provide a portrayal of that person, their life, values, accomplishments, and historical significance in the context of major events. With that though, we must ask ourselves whether we are getting a well-rounded portrayal, or a biased view that fits a particular narrative. I would tell students that today we are going to analyze several sources and compare the “versions” of Abraham Lincoln that each describes. Before diving into our sources though, I want them to “wonder” for five minutes and write their questions on the next color of sticky note.

After having them stick their notes under the “W” column of the chart, I would move on to share a portion of Looking for Lincoln that takes a critical look at the notion of Abraham Lincoln as the “Great Emancipator.” I would have stations prepared around the room with a copy of a source for students to analyze in assigned groups of five or six. Sources would include excerpts from Lincoln’s Eulogy on Henry Clay from 1852, Lincoln’s speech on slavery and the American dream from 1858, his debates with Stephen Douglas from1854 and 1858, the Emancipation Proclamation, and Frederick Douglass’ Oration in Memory of Abraham Lincoln from 1876.

While working through each station, students would be required to write at least three things they learned on their last sticky note and place it under the “L” column of the chart. We would reconvene and quickly remove some of their questions from the “Wonder” column. Then we would deep dive into what they learned using the resources they analyzed.

Wrapping up, we would compare the portrayal of Lincoln that they have been accustomed to, with the more complex individual and politician that Lincoln was, noting how his views on how to address slavery seemed to evolve.
Enon Elementary
Elementary
You can use this in your classroom so students can have an actual image of what things looked like. I teach the lower primary grades, so writing isn't well established at this point.
Students at this level could observe primary/secondary sources and create a Venn diagram. They can also be shown maps, photographs, etc. and a KWL chart can be constructed and filled in as we go.
History and Social Science Instructional Specialist
K-12
I will develop a pressional develompent that will showcase these tools to allow teachers to use them in the classroom.
4th grade teacher
Elementary
In order to support historical thinking in my classroom, I will engage students with putting primary resources in their hands. I teach Virginia Studies, and I could use maps, speeches, pictures. It is important for students to have time with the primary resources and to have a question posed to focus on. Students would use the historical inquiry (SCIM-C)
Teacher
Middle
I plan to incorporate at-least one type of historical thinking activity for each unit in my lessons. This will help increase higher level learning and give students a chance to explore history on their own or with a group of peers.
Applying Lessons Learned
High
Challenge students to analyze primary sources including advertisements for slaves as part of learning about colonial and early America.
Historical thinking is The Best Thinking
High
For each topic, I am considering this process:
1. Pass out copies of primary sources and/or have students view the primary source is teams
2. Pass out individual copies of KWL charts as students interact with the primary source.
3. Have each team present their findings.
4. Seperate clas into groups that carry different perpspectives and lead a class discussion from different perspectives.
Historical Thinking and Engaging Students
Middle
In my classroom, I often have the students do station activities with various primary source materials. Many times, the students will be asked to analyze the items and compare/contrast them. This will lead the students to forming a position on the sources and applying it to a common theme/question presented to the class.
Doing History
Middle
I will use this to help students think like a historian. Take the topic and have students look at artifacts, then create a hypothesis and then examine primary sources.
For example: I would have them study a website on the reasons for westward expansion, then create a hypothesis about why they think settlers went west, then divide into groups or pair with another class to debate. Final assignment would be to write and reflect on what they learned, questions answered and questions they may still have.
Classroom application
Elementary
A good way to incorporate historical thinking in the classroom would be to have students examine primary documents. Upon examination, students would have to work together to determine the answers to various scenarios. For instance, students are often shocked when they start to explore the perspective of slave owners. They show empathy, which shocks them, because the act of slavery is so repulsive.
General Education Teacher
Elementary
The reason I decided to take this course is because history is often the most hated subject of my students. I struggle to get them involved in discussions that are meaningful. I absolutely love the idea of beginning with some documents and allowing the students to take ownership over the questions that arise and searching for the answers. I like the SCIM-C strategy because it is a concrete way of teaching students how to do this. I will definitely use the primary source about Thomas Jefferson, for example, to get them thinking about the parts of history that are not highlighted in the textbook. I have a feeling that once they get used to it, they will really enjoy doing this.
??
Elementary
I could provide students with primary sources such as photos etc. for students to investigate prior to teaching a lesson. This would allow students to make conclusions about the primary source and hypothesize what might be going on and the circumstances surrounding the person or event.
Historical Thinking in H2 (My Classroom)
High
In the past I have focused on sourcing of primary source document, especially with my AP students; however, what I have not emphasized is the importance of this skill outside history as an academic discipline. I believe learning of information and skills requires educators to make connections that are relevant to students, and by telling students that getting them to think historically has life skills embedded into the lesson(s), then there might be more buy-in. I would love for students to learn about a historical event in class and then have them apply the same skills to a current event and see what they take from an academic standpoint to issues going on in the world around them. I think I would do this through stations or group work that way it encourages collaborative learning and I can help facilitate by walking around and answering questions as opposed to lecturing students.
Comparing maps
High
I liked the lesson in the video part 2 showing the comparison between today's maps and maps of the past. I would like to do a version of this lesson with my high school students that builds on the idea of waterways as the super highways of the past. I would like to start with the modern map and as the same questions to demonstrate that thinking historically can apply to modern topics as well. I would then introduce the historical map and ask the same questions about it. I especially like the questioning discerning about what is important to the people making the map and who would be using it.
Thomas Jefferson
High
I LOVED the example used here of comparing Thomas Jefferson's runaway slave notice, with his words in the Declaration of Independence. I would like to develop a lesson, where students can first analyze and understand the runaway slave notice, then analyze the preamble to the Declaration. I think I would like students to come up with a questions they would ask Jefferson about the documents, and perhaps, think of ways Jefferson could answer. Finally, hold a class discussion about what they think about Thomas Jefferson's place in American history.
The Boston Tea Party
High
I LOVED the example used here of comparing Thomas Jefferson's runaway slave notice, with his words in the Declaration of Independence. I would like to develop a lesson, where students can first analyze and understand the runaway slave notice, then analyze the preamble to the Declaration. I think I would like students to come up with a questions they would ask Jefferson about the documents, and perhaps, think of ways Jefferson could answer. Finally, hold a class discussion about what they think about Thomas Jefferson's place in American history.
Instructional Designer
Elementary
Historical thinking is taking the time to analyze and reconstruct the past through primary resources. Looking at all aspects of a story is so important as it is sometimes viewed as one sided. We need to ask questions and look at every detail of the resources to build a better understanding of the accounts.
Application of Historical Thinking
High
I have been looking for ideas for mini-projects to go with each unit so that the students could have some fun while learning. This really triggers some ideas, or at least some thoughts that could lead to ideas. I think I will start next year with pre-history of VA and work through the tribes. In this I can have students look at the the tribes and what their culture was like in comparison to each other and to the settlers that came. During the learning of major events (Civil Rights, Vietnam, settlers, slaves, elections, etc.), I am going to incorporate the other perspective and have them discuss their opinions and thoughts with the class.
Historical Thinking: Colonial Times
Elementary
My students would be given primary sources of journals and letters from the Colonial era. After reading as a class, students would then work in groups to outline the primary problems of the early settlers (food sources, harsh weather, etc). They would further discuss what they view as the root of these specific problems ( lack of skills, poor planning, etc) and how issues might have been prevented or better managed. The class teams would then present their findings and views.
Historical Thinking in the Classroom
Pre-K
Kindergarten students are inquisitive and constantly want to know who, how, and why. Using the KWL strategy with historical pictures, clothing, objects, and maps help students connect their prior knowledge, look closely at the sources, and ask questions about history. Students can role play history to help them investigate the past and ask questions like a historian.
Historical thinking in the alternative classroom
High
I teach in an alternative school. It is not a school for 'bad' children. It is a school for students who may not learn the normal way, or have other, pressing issues more 'important' than learning, or may have students who just don't fit the usual cookie cutter molds of students. Many are those who just don't care about history as 'it doesn't pertain to them.' Using historical thinking in the classroom greatly benefits this type of student to become a more critical thinker and realize history DOES affect them. Having a teacher who can relate the material to them and help them to critically think as someone from the time period can think helps drive home the importance of history and apply the thinking to present day events.
Connecting Historical Thinking to the Classroom
Elementary
I can apply historical thinking in my classroom by first defining what historical thinking is and then by providing opportunities for students to examine, question, and apply historical thinking as they learn the Virginia Studies content. For examples, I would give students an essential question like, “Why did Virginia choose the side it chose in the Civil War?” Student would be given a variety of primary sources to analyze and question. To assist students with their analysis, I would provide a set of questions such as:
• Who was the author of the source and intended audience?
• What specific information can be learned from the source?
• What interpretations can be made from the source?
• When was the source created? What else was happening around that same time?

Students would then use the knowledge gain from the lessons to answer the question.
Approaching our year in history class
Elementary
When I teach history, I'd like to start the year by asking students what they think history is, what historians do and don't do, and what they think is important in learning history, as well as why we learn about history. Students will likely come up with a lot of thoughts, and they may agree and disagree with each other. I'd continue the conversation by asking what students think it means to "think historically", and after hearing some contributions, present some artifacts, advertisements, newspaper articles, photographs, etc. and ask how these items can help budding historians such as ourselves to think historically. Perhaps a friend could come and talk to the class about what she does in her career in archaeology, what sparked her love of history, and what thinking historically means to her. We'd spend the year analyzing a variety of primary and secondary sources and discussing evidence for claims people today and in the past have made regarding different events or people, and developing questions to investigate, and in turn, developing more questions. The year would be very interactive, between students and sources, and between students themselves.
KeriD -Teacher
Elementary
First, teaching what is historical thinking and how is it important when learning history. Next, teaching what is a primary source and a secondary source - how are they similar and how are they different. Then, teaching how to be historical detectives by using multiple sources from differing backgrounds as to avoid a skewed one sided points of view story; instead of an accurate historical accounting. When we are able to put primary sources with in students reach they can make real life connections with historical accounting.
KeriD -Teacher
Elementary
First, teaching what is historical thinking and how is it important when learning history. Next, teaching what is a primary source and a secondary source - how are they similar and how are they different. Then, teaching how to be historical detectives by using multiple sources from differing backgrounds as to avoid a skewed one sided points of view story; instead of an accurate historical accounting. When we are able to put primary sources with in students reach they can make real life connections with historical accounting.
Melissa L. DiAscro
Elementary
As I looked through the different examples of primary sources and examples of using primary sources in the classroom, many ideas came to mind. To be honest, I was unsure of good ways to use analysis of primary sources in my own classroom. After watching the teacher guiding her students through examination of John Smith's 1612 map of Virginia, I feel it would be something that I could do. The analysis of primary sources seems that it would be easier to introduce when students are working in partners or smaller groups. However, before having students working in partners, I would model using primary sources. Since I teach 5th grade and the students seem to have difficulties with analysis of primary sources (We did a performance assessessment that involved analyzing 5 images of American Indian tribes--including emphasis on human, capital, and natural resources. The students struggled with this task.) I am not sure how much of an opportunity the students have had, so I would want to incorporate the idea of including primary sources earlier in the year to help students understand the process, both in my classroom and in future classrooms. Prior to starting this performance assessment, we did three mini-lessons on primary sources vs. secondary sources. Moving forward, I would want to make sure to spend more time differentiating between the two types of sources.
To ensure my students understand what is meant by historical thinking, I think it would be important to share parts of the video clip "What is Historical Thinking" from TeachingHistory.org. As I shared this video clip, I would stop and have discussion about the components. During this time, I would also share examples of primary resources.
Melissa L. DiAscro
Elementary
As I looked through the different examples of primary sources and examples of using primary sources in the classroom, many ideas came to mind. To be honest, I was unsure of good ways to use analysis of primary sources in my own classroom. After watching the teacher guiding her students through examination of John Smith's 1612 map of Virginia, I feel it would be something that I could do. The analysis of primary sources seems that it would be easier to introduce when students are working in partners or smaller groups. However, before having students working in partners, I would model using primary sources. Since I teach 5th grade and the students seem to have difficulties with analysis of primary sources (We did a performance assessessment that involved analyzing 5 images of American Indian tribes--including emphasis on human, capital, and natural resources. The students struggled with this task.) I am not sure how much of an opportunity the students have had, so I would want to incorporate the idea of including primary sources earlier in the year to help students understand the process, both in my classroom and in future classrooms.
To ensure my students understand what is meant by historical thinking, I think it would be important to share parts of the video clip "What is Historical Thinking" from TeachingHistory.org. As I shared this video clip, I would stop and have discussion about the components. During this time, I would also share examples of primary resources.
Historical Thinking in Third Grade
Elementary
As a third grade teacher, I am tasked with teaching students about ancient civilizations- Egypt, China, Greece, Rome, and Mali. These topics contain concepts and ideas that are difficult for young students , and traditional methods of teaching history, such as reading and taking notes, make these topics seem quite boring. I try to bring in primary sources, such as works of art or pictures of artifacts, for analysis and discussion. The topics covered in this module have expanded my thinking and encouraged me to provide more in-depth analysis of primary sources. For example, I could provide pictures of artifacts found in a pharaoh's tomb and have students analyze the pictures to try to determine the significance of their being included in the tomb. Different pairs or groups of students could be given different artifacts, and could share their thinking with the rest of the group. Together they could try hypothesize about the contents of the tomb and their importance in the context of what they have learned about the ancient Egyptians.
4th Grade Virginia Studies: Why the Civil War Happened
Elementary
In this activity students should examine primary resources and apply them to the events that led to the beginning of the Civil War. In doing so they should be able to answer questions such as: Why were southern states so intent on keeping slaves?, Why was slavery it opposed by northern states?, What major events helped the southern states decide to leave the Union?, and in terms of Virginia's history, What was Virginia's role in all of this? and Why did they choose to secede with the other southern states?
4th Grade Virginia Studies: Why the Civil War Happened
Elementary
In this activity students should examine primary resources and apply them to the events that led to the beginning of the Civil War. In doing so they should be able to answer questions such as: Why were southern states so intent on keeping slaves?, Why was slavery it opposed by northern states?, What major events helped the southern states decide to leave the Union?, and in terms of Virginia's history, What was Virginia's role in all of this? and Why did they choose to secede with the other southern states?
The Historical Methodological Technique of Students Understanding Events in Multiple Ways
High
Provide both primary artifacts (maps, documents, articles, memoirs, etc.) and analytical essays and publications from historians or "outsiders", like those reading about these events. I would begin a discussion using both types of sources and ask the class questions that lead the students into actual facts found in the artifacts as well as asking the students probing questions about the opinions of actual historical events. The students would then be given questions to answer, which would compel them to look further into both types of documents and broaden the understanding of their perspectives of the totality of moments of history and its place on the historical time line.
Exploring Historical Thinking in the Classroom
Elementary
I think that modeling historic thinking in the classroom and explaining what historical thinking entails would be very beneficial to students. Many students are not used to thinking in this way, and often provide answers to our questions by reciting memorized information or giving the answer they believe we as teachers expect from them. Instead, we need to show them how to think critically and continuously question information we come across. Modeling this thinking as shown in the "Thinking Like a Historian" poster (shown in the video with two teachers in Wisconsin) containing ways students can consider and analyze information: cause and effect, change and continuity, turning points, using the past (to make sense of the present), through their eyes (perspective). To model this, I would use a primary source such as the Virginia map used in the video and show students how I may question things, make note of what I see (summarize), and consider the author and audience. Over time and with much practice, students will become more expert at thinking historically, but I believe that modeling and continued practice are key to this.
Teacher
Elementary
As a Kindergarten teacher, I would show the story of history in different perspectives of one event and allow students to express their thinking. Give students opportunity to make connections to the world around them and how the events of history has changed the way life is today, the social aspects of history.
Mod 1 Croteau
Middle
I think I would introduce the concepts behind historical thinking to my sixth graders using a historical topic they were mostly unfamiliar with. I would first give my students several examples of what they think they know and what the actual facts are (Rosa Parks / boycott intentions example from the video). I would then issue them a challenge to discover more things that aren't what they seem. After discussing the different aspects of historical thinking, students could pick two things they think they would be great at and we could break into groups from there.
Special Education Teacher
Elementary
I think that I will apply the K-W-L chart at first to help me get aquatinted with the process of creating historical thinkers. I think it is important to have children be in charge of their own learning. I will make sure that I get a primary source of a document and a secondary source at my students each individual level. I will have them work in buddies to talk about the significance of the document in the past and how it connects to our future. I will have to make sure that I post certain questions that might be answered in the K-W-L chart, because with some of my students they do not understand higher level thinking. I also would like to bring in artifacts from different time periods and explore how the people might have used them in the past. I would have students name what we would use now to help us complete that same task.
Classroom Teacher
Elementary
As I stated in the previous answer, I definitely plan on applying the "SCIM-C" Model in my classroom using an activity centered around maps and other primary sources as it relates to colonial Virginia and other key events in our Virginia Studies curriculum.
Teacher of English
High
While I do not teach US History, I know that I could use SCIM - C when I use historical documents in my classroom. I teach primarily American Literature which at its core has a necessary discussion about how historical movements shape literature; literature is just a reflection of someones personal history. By using primary source material as well as the concepts of SCIM - C I can have my students question reading in a way they may not normally address a fictional text.
Teacher
Elementary
I cannot read at the students. I have to get the students to dive in with me. Textbooks were written after the fact and pieced together. Instead of reviewing the overall narrative, I can teach piece by piece, and the students put together the narrative. This involves hands-on with primary sources. It also means teaching kids how to think critically and question their sources and seek information on their own. My biggest takeaway is allowing kids to be independent thinkers and let them make their connections.
What is It?
Elementary
I know students enjoy playing the game of 20 questions trying to figure out what is hidden or what someone has decided is the answer. I believe bringing in one or more artifacts that students are unfamiliar with and asking questions about it will help start them on their journey of historical thinking. Hopefully, I can come up with something they really don't know what it is or what it was used to do. That way we can start by stating what we know. Then we can add information that puts the artifact in context to help them understand the importance of context. Then they can ask questions and search out information to see if anything out there corroborates their ideas. It still leaves taking in multiple perspectives to be dealt with but it should start students thinking like a historian.
Applying Historical Thinking In 6th Grade US History II
Middle
Historical thinking is when people who are studying history think about how and why events occured. To teach students this level of critical thinking, I would use the analysis of primary source documents in class. If I was having students analyse a document referencing the burning of Richmond, I would have them SCIM-C the document. I have used an image of a man sitting on a stone pillar in front of a burnt Richmond. After using the SCIM-C process I would then ask my students "why did the south need to be rebuilt?" I would have them write a summary describing the image and using the image the explain why Reconstruction was necessary.
Historical Thinking Activity - Color over the Ages
Elementary
For my 2nd grade students, I would open the crayon box, and review how colors are mixed to form other colors. Students will explore color trends over the ages exploring the origins of color dyes and why some colors were more expensive than others. Examples: Fun Facts: In Williamsburg, red and green were the most expensive colors. Red came from crushing cochineal beetles. Green was expensive because you had to double dye with yellow and then blue. Some houses had green paint downstairs where visitors came, but no paint or white paint upstairs where the family lived. In Victorian times, most small children wore white. When kids became older, pink was meant for boys and blue for girls, since red was seen as a strong masculine color and pink is muted red. Activity: Examine photos/ works of art/ architecture. Who would have worn green or red in Williamsburg? Why was the downstairs painted green, but upstairs left as plain white? What do colors mean in the clothing sections or toy aisles today? How do you feel about wearing certain colors? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pink#18th_century https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/red-red-whine/ https://thecolonialwigmaker.weebly.com/fun-facts.html
Melissa Bernal
Middle
Now that I have learned more about historical thinking, I am going to implement new activities into my classroom. I have used gallery walks before, but I haven't used them in terms of analyzing documents, etc. At the beginning of my class, students have to become familiar with the different documents that influence our US Constitution and I think a gallery walk could be a great way to introduce those documents where students will compare and contrast the importance of the documents. This will also promote conversations between students and allow for their intellectual growth.

I also intend to use the KWL process more in class. Since school was closed in March I have been thinking about how I can restructure my class to make it more student centered and interesting for them. I have a lot of ideas and this module on historical thinking has definitely given me some new ideas to implement.
Application of SCIM-C in Virginia Studies
Elementary
I might apply historical thinking by presenting the students a copy of the Declaration of Independence with a teacher given question posted on the board. The students could share some facts and what they see. Students could then be given time to look for clues in the document while making educated guesses. The teacher could guide the students in monitoring what they’ve inferred, what questions they have, and what they think is needed. The class could get together and share their information while their peers comment on similarities, differences and ask questions. Finally, each student might write about what they individually learned and what they still wonder about.
Introducing Historical Thinking
Elementary
To start the school year, I would choose a historical event that everyone is familiar with (not necessarily part of our grade-level curriculum). We'd discuss what students know about said event, making sure everyone has the same background knowledge. I would then give students vetted source materials from different perspectives to see what they notice and discover about the event. Group discussion and whole class discussion would follow.

I think I would look at applying a similar model to each of units of study throughout the year - a teaching of the basic facts, but then student exploration of different perspectives regarding the facts.
Historical Thinking to Develop Conclusions About Cultural Perspectives
High
In French class, students learn about cultural aspects of French-speaking countries and compare this to aspects of their own American culture. History is deeply embedded in the culture of a community and offers insight into practices and perspectives that we may take for granted.
Teaching students to think historically, as presented in this course, has the potential to be a valuable strategy in French class, just as it does in history class, in a couple of ways. first, to learn about the culture of a community that is unfamiliar, students examine numerous sources. Teaching them to read closely, to think critically, and to interpret the information is as applicable here as it is in history class. I absolutely want them to explore, discover, and behave like detectives to find answers to their questions. For example, we often use magazine articles as a source of cultural information. Whether in the present or the past, sourcing, close reading, and contextualizing are skills they need to apply in order to fully understand the information.
Second, in a similar fashion, students may need to ask questions about their own cultural perspectives and practices in order to make comparisons. For example, what do we know about our history that informs our practice of celebrating the 4th of July?Methods of historical inquiry such as SCIM-C and K-W-L offer a means of discovering culture as it is intertwined with history in students' own community as well as that of a French speaking country.
Historical Thinking
High
I would like to provide my students with multiple primary sources and artifacts concerning a certain standard, concept, or question in which I am teaching. I will then guilde my students through the "Scim-C" process and allow them to use that same process to summarize, contextualize, infer, monitor, and finally corroborate their findings in order to construct an understanding of the topic or question in which they were presented.
Teacher
High
I would like to provide my students with multiple primary sources and artifacts concerning a certain standard, concept, or question in which I am teaching. I will then guilde my students through the "Scim-C" process and allow them to use that same process to summarize, contextualize, infer, monitor, and finally corroborate their findings in order to construct an understanding of the topic or question in which they were presented.
How do detectives manage to solve a crime? (Specifics on finding evidence to support a hypothesis )
Middle
Have a crime scene in the room where there is an abundance of evidence to look at. Police report, the victim, the eye-witness accounts, possible suspects and physical evidence. The questions the students would have to answer in order to find out what happened? Why it happened, who was involved? Why was it important to the victim and the perpetrator? What evidence supports those questions? Who committed the crime and why? I think this type of activity gives students the skills to questions and observe. They may find out information from the perspectives about the victim and the eye-witnesses which may help them determine the answer to the question which could be re-written as "What does a detective need to solve a crime?" The SCIM and KWL would be excellent tools to help organize student ideas. Students could work together gathering information from different centers which focus on different parts of the crime scene and witnesses. They can hypothesize in the beginning who could possibly be the one who committed the crime and through the evidence proof their hypothesis or change it. I think this would be a fun way to introduce historical thinking to the classes. We could look at evidence through history as a parallel way to determine answers to why things happened, who was involved, why they were involved, how it affects us today with other lessons.
Cartwright - Classroom Connections
High
I would first go over basic steps in analyzing primary sources with my students. I would also provide students with a basic template to help them analyze primary sources. Once students were comfortable analyzing primary sources I would introduce the idea of multiple perspectives to students by examining an event, such as the Boston Massacre. I would have students look at the different viewpoints to come to a conclusion on what happened: who was at fault? I feel like this helps history come alive for students, instead of just examining history from a date and event model. By having students engage the events of history through the people that experienced they can insert themselves into the event to better grasp what truly occurred.
Paula Litwin (Historical Thinking)
Elementary
I would apply this way of historical thinking by giving my students a variety of sources. Each group of students would analyze a set of sources. Then they would split into groups with one person from each of the expert groups and discuss their findings. This jigsaw method would allow them to collaborate with their classmates and discuss the differences in the sources to get a deeper understanding of the past and the world around them.
Lori Callis-5th grade teacher
Elementary
As a teacher, I feel we do not spend enough time analyzing important documents that still apply today, specifically, the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. As a whole class, we would read a section of the document together (i.e. Preamble to the Constitution). Then, I would have students in pairs or small groups complete a KWL chart for the portion of the document we had just read together. The K would be for the information we already knew (i.e name of document, who wrote document, when document was written). The W would include information we didn't know including any vocabulary words. The L would be for information we researched from the W section, including any vocabulary words. We would come back together as a whole group and discuss the information in our KWL chart.
Historical Thinking- Classroom Connections
Pre-K
I would bring in an artifact, something they can touch. I would ask questions: what do they already know about the artifact?, does it remind them of something else? How did people use this? With younger students it must be tactile and entertaining. If possible an actual experiment of the usage of the artifact, and showing other objects that it is linked to.
Foundations of Democracy in the United States
High
As part of this Government Unit, our class examines the content and importance of the Magna Carta. Before students are given copies of the Magna Carta, I will provide them with primary source documents that illustrate the issues Englishmen have with the king's rule. Next, I will divide students into groups and give each a section of the document to analyze. Students will be asked to choose the previously read primary source document that best supports that section of the Magna Carta. In addition, students will rewrite their assigned section of the Magna Carta into modern English. These findings and interpretations will be shared with the rest of the class.
SCIM-M
Elementary
When reading nonfiction texts with my small groups, I can have them do further research on the topic. They might find multiple sources and together as a group we could do the SCIM-C method.
The Complexity of Thomas Jefferson
Elementary
A great way to apply historical thinking in my fourth grade classroom would be to have my students compare Jefferson’s ideas in his Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom with his 1769 runaway advertisement. Half of the class would read excerpts from the Statute in pairs and the other half would read the runaway advertisement. At the beginning of the activity, I would not mention that Jefferson was the author of either document.
After both documents are read by the pairs, I’d have them write three or four summary sentences about key ideas contained in the documents. They would then have to make informed guesses about the occupation and the personality of their document's author, based on specific clues they locate in their passages. I’d imagine that many students would guess the author of the Statute could be a minister with a kind personality and the author of the advertisement could be a planter with a cruel personality. I’d also imagine that nearly all students would be quite surprised toward the end of the lesson to learn that Jefferson was the author of both documents. Some may even be shocked that the man who wrote “all men are created equal” and believed it was “sinful and tyrannical” to compel worship in only one manner would also offer cash rewards for a human being he claimed to own. Before the lesson ends, I’d mentioned that other promoters of freedom and liberty, such as Patrick Henry, George Washington, James Madison, and George Mason, were also prominent slaveowners. This activity is an excellent way for students to learn that “history is messy” and that our founding fathers were complex individuals.
What Does it Mean to Think Like a Historian?
Elementary
The teacher would bring in an artifact, map, photograph or some document to share with the class as a way to introduce the historical thinking process. Students may go through this process using KWL or SCIM to be immersed in the steps of this process. This would set the groundwork for future historical inquiry lessons as it relates to the content taught.
The Ideals of the Declaration of Independence
Middle
The activity I would have my students use to promote historical thinking would be using a K-W-L Chart. Students would be given a copy of the Declaration of Independence. They would possibly write down in the "Know" column such answers as- 1. Who wrote the document, 2. When it was written, 3. What was it's basic purpose? Then they would write in the "Want To" column possible questions surrounding the list of grievances and what is the story behind each grievance. They might even start asking questions about what did Jefferson mean by "all men are created equal? What did he mean by men? What did he mean by equal? As a slave owner, what did he mean by liberty? Students would then conduct further research to seek out answers and then write a short essay with their findings to present to class. This would be the "What I learned" portion of the chart.
Being objective thinkers
High
I would break my class up into groups of four or five. Each group would be responsible for taking a widely known event and delving into using the following steps: Multiple accounts and perspectives, analysis of primary sources, sourcing, understanding historical content , and lastly claiming evidence connection.
When complete they would report their investigation to the whole class to see if commonly held beliefs hold true.
Social Studies teacher
High
Providing students with multiple primary sources and have them answer essential questions using primary sources. Allow students to work in partners reviewing sources, and come together as a class to answer essential questions.
Evaluating Sources
High
I will put more emphasis on evaluating sources. I will have the students look at the origin, purpose, value, and limitations of the source. The student will look at different sources within a topic and compare and contrast the sources. This will help the student reflect on the information and make his or her own conclusion.
Evaluating Sources
High
I will put more of an emphasis on evaluating sources. I will have the students look at the origin, purpose, value, and limitations of the source. The student will look at different sources within a topic and compare and contrast the sources. The will help the student analyze the sources.
Historical Thinking
Elementary
While the textbook is full of facts, primary sources must be used to introduce a variety of voices from the past.

I plan to use more primary sources to push my students to read, to analyze, and to think critically.
Holly Natalie
High
There are may ways that I will apply historical thinking in my classroom. First, I definitely plan on using close readings when introducing to my students to important speeches. For example, when examining the Gettysburg Address a close reading would be an excellent opportunity to look closely at the vocabulary as well as the tone of the document to gain a better understanding of the Civil War. Next, I plan on using the SCIM-C method for examining one source with a guided question.. Particularly, when examining possibly changes that happen with American identity regarding race relations through evaluating a letter. Lastly, I would have students look at an image of westward movement like possibly John Gast's American Progress and developing a hypothesis as to what the different symbols represent regarding westward movement.
English 11
High
_The Crucible- by Arthur Miller is one specific unit that allows itself to historical thinking practices. We are not only analyzing the Puritan lifestyle contraints as it affects the fictional/historical characters in the play, but also the times in which Arthur Miller wrote the play, as well as its enduring themes in the complex world in which we find ourselves now. I can divide the class into partners/groups with each researching and presenting a specific perspective surrounding the play. I have usually presented this information in a variety of ways myself, but now I want to try a more learner-centered approach.
Were They Really Different?
Middle
Bring in Native American and Colonial artifacts. Such as knives, tools, clothes, etc. Place the Native American artifacts on one side of the room and the colonist artifacts on the other. Ask the students a questions, were the Native Americans and the Colonialist really different? Using the SCIM-C method have the students work in groups of 2-4. Go from one side of the room to the other and based on their observations answer the question. The objective is to get the students to understand just because the Native Americans might have dressed different, used different tools that does not make them different. They were still people, they were not savages.
SCIM-C & KWL
High
I have used variations of SCIM-C and KWL in my classroom previously. I have not used those specific methods to teach multiple primary sources relating to the same event. I like the idea of using SCIM-C specifically because I never had my students corroborate their sources (I had them use the "SCIM" portion). With KWL, we used that as an introduction to new units, but never to an event with multiple primary sources. I think I will use these tools to ease students into comparing multiple primary sources to learn about a single event, or to compare perspectives.
When Should Authority Be Questioned?
Elementary
The students will explore several primary sources such as Lord Dunmore's Proclamation, Historical Quotes, Excerpts from the Declaration of Independence, and Excerpts from Patrick Henry Speech to answer three supporting questions, 1. What Conflicts/Events Led to questioning authority, 2. On what issues did the Colonists and British disagree, and 3. How can someone create change by questioning authority? By exploring these 3 supporting questions students will be able to answer the main question, When Should Authority Be Questioned. The students will work in pairs to explore these sources utilizing the KWL strategy and will then come together to discuss their findings as a whole group. This needs to be student-driven with the teacher as a facilitator. This will be a multi-day activity. The language of the resources can be modified/translated to meet the needs of my students with disabilities.
What really happened?
High
Give students several different accounts of an event in history for example The March on Washington. Use primary and secondary sources. After reading the information have students put together what really happened at the march using each resource in telling their version of the event.
How I would use historical thinking in my Classroom
Elementary
Teachers can use “thinking historically” activities such as SCIM-C, Historical Inquiry KWL, and Historical Reading Skills to instruct students on the investigative process of critical thinking regarding sourcing. The analytic process is also backward based design using sourcing. An activity I could use for historical thinking would be to use a SCIM-C for Massive Resistance in VA Studies. I could provide students with photographs and newspaper articles of student protesters in Farmville VA advocating for schools to reopen. Students would work in small groups then share their small group SCIM to corroborate their findings together as a whole class to recap their conclusions/questions.
Investigation : The Lost Colony (Roanoke Island) What Happened????
Elementary
Using a KWL chart, have students fill in the chart together as a class what they know about they know about the Lost Colony , and what they want to know or learn about the topic.
Show a short video about the Roanoke Island Colony. Place students in groups of 4 and give them information about clues left behind at the colony to examine. Give students multiple historians predictions about what could have possibly happened based on evidence at the site. Allow students to use the information to make conclusions based on the information given. Bring the class together to discuss their predictions based on fact and complete the KWL chart on what they have learned and understand based on the materials examine as a possible answer to the question.
Historical Thinking in VA Studies
Elementary
I could incorporate the K-W-L method more as hook or introduction to a standard that is being taught. I would encourage my students to take information that they are presented with from the primary source and examine it closely as we are learning a new standard. I would utilize more primary sources such as: interviews, diaries, ads, letters, maps, and diary entries as materials that they review. I would encourage them to ask outside-the-box questions to themselves and in a group setting (e.g. How?, Why?, When?, and to What extent?, etc). I would try to utilize the skills being taught for historical thinking in cooperative learning groups and model the students as they ask questions together. This would be a great lesson to have for artifacts and native peoples for historical thinking. Have the students make connections and give contextual evidence to support their hypotheses. As the students are scaffolding with the SCIM-C application, encourage them to be history detectives together.
Historical Thinking
Elementary
I've primary sources in my classroom only a few times and I LOVED what happened. Students began thinking outside the box about what they were looking at. I like the idea of the SCIM-C and using KWL charts along with primary sources. I like the idea of using the KWL chart to see what we know as a class or even students independently, what questions we still have after viewing the source, and what we learned. It makes things go full circle.
Teacher
Elementary
Using historical thinking to teach about the past would minimize the role of the textbook. One textbook cannot include all the necessary information to teach the required objectives. We have always found it necessary to search for other resources to supplement information included in the textbook. My students will have a more interactive role in learning not only what happened in the past, but how to use various sources to better understand the past. I will emphasize the importance of using multiple perspectives and finding connective points in them that give them credibility. The use of primary sources as much as possible will also give more authenticity than pages in a textbook.
Using historical thinking also involves research. Finding appropriate sources, collecting information and taking notes, then reviewing, analyzing, and interpreting information are all important research skills. Since fourth graders are beginning to use research as a literary objective, this is a perfect way to practice.
Historical Thinking
High
Using Political Cartoons and Campaign Ads is a great way to get students to think about the Social Sciences. It actually is a great Formative and Summative tool. Questions like what was the agenda of the cartoon or campaign ad? What there a major event in History tied to the Cartoon or Campaign Ad? Great way to get student's to think past just the dates and names.
Current Events and Remembering the Past
High
As historical thinking is not just about understanding what happened in the past, but about considering the viewpoints of others and looking at the world around us in a critical way, its very easy to bring this into current events. I could use current events (the current debate about bringing down monuments) to help ask students to consider how we build and remember the past. We could choose any monument (the Andrew Jackson statue in Lafayette Square, for instance) and find various sources about it; speeches from its dedication, notes from its planning stages, letters and op-eds from those who currently want to remove or keep it, secondary biographies in support of or opposition to the man, letters and journals written by him personally. After breaking into groups to source these documents and understand their context, biases, etc. I could challenge my students to write two short statements; one in support of removing a monument, one in support of keeping it. Following we could discuss the ease or difficulty with which they were able to write their responses.
Investigation of the Boston Massacre
High
I created a scenario in which the students were police officers who had to investigate the Boston Massacre for the Court. They had to "interview" the people involved, create a police report about that interview, and then as a group, decide who they would recommend for arrest and trial. In their report to the court, they had to outline their evidence and their thinking.
Historical Thinking
Elementary
My primary focus with any history lesson is trying to supply my students with multiple resources so that they can- read, analyze--- write and think more clearly about historical events that shaped our world today. I like to use group posters that students create-- and they add pictures and information to as they all work to learn more about the topic. I love project based learning. Many of these I have converted to digital projects about historical people and events.
Using SCIM-C with Lewis Hines Photographs
Middle
I liked the lithograph of Westward Expansion. I think you could do a similar activity with a few photographs of child labor by Lewis Hines. Using the SCIM-C method, students could first do a close examination of the photographs and describe what they see. Next students should consider the context, then infer what idea is being presented. After monitoring their work (or double checking it), students corroborate information. This method could lead to great questions about Industrialization and the Progressive Era. Students could discuss how the photographs were not merely taken to preserve a moment in time, but to convince the American public of the evils on child labor.
Historical Thinking in World History
High
I would like to use the SCIM-C method described in the module to guide my students in creating reports or presentations on a variety of ancient civilizations such as the Aztec, Maya, and Inca peoples. I believe this method would help my students to think historically, and get more involved and interested in learning history. Students could use this method to investigate documents and artifacts from these groups, and to allow themselves to become historians by summarizing, contextualizing, making inferences, and corroborating information.
historical thinking
Elementary
While teaching about Powhatan Indians, I would show several different types of native homes and then decide why the long house would be the best choice . Similar for the Lakota and Pueblo.
Racial stereotypes in U.S. History
High
Small group activity to have students think about and explain taught behaviors of racism and stereotyping of various groups of people in what is the United States from the period of European exploration to the modern day.
Applying Historical Thinking in the Classroom
Elementary
I can already envision many lessons incorporating historical thinking. I can really see its applicability in several units including Jamestown, the American Revolution and the Civil War. Take the Revolution, for example. I would without a doubt use political cartoons of the era as a sample of a patriots viewpoint. I would then add that maybe to specific documents from Parliament outlining laws such as the Townsend Acts or some kind of loyalist perspective of the times. I would give the students a leading question and have them SCIM or K-W-L each source they would be given.
Teaching History for the First Time in a Decade
Elementary
I have not explicitly taught History in a decade. We have been departmentalized for many years in the upper grades at my facility. My main responsibilities have been Writing, Mathematics, and Science instruction in Grade 5. I assist with the instruction of the grammar, etc. that students need to learn for producing their History portfolio projects and help students with the formulation of the rubrics.
I really like having students being invested in their own learning process. How many times a day do we hear the dreaded question about why they are required to learn something? I feel with the SCIM-C process presented here that students will be ¨history detectives¨ as stated by educator John Hallagan. They have to make personal connections about why learning the content material is of importance to them or they will be simply regurgitating names and dates back to us.
I think that it is important, too, to tell my students that I do not have all of the answers to their inquiries. Teachers need to be learners as well in the process of learning to think historically. When I was a student myself, I excelled in History, but I despised it because it felt very stagnant to me. Had I been encouraged to question and investigate, I believe that I would have actually enjoyed the classes. I am definitely going to let my students know that Ms. Parker-Collins is learning along with them.
In a time of Wikipedia and multiple internet resources, some credible and many not, my students will need to know how to determine if a source is valid or not. They need to understand the perspectives, motives, and targeted audiences of both primary and secondary resources as they are on their journey to thinking historically. I cannot help but think of the meme with Abraham Lincoln where he is quoted stating not to believe everything that you read on the internet. We need to teach them to discern a good source from one that is not.
I liked the idea of the website creation of historical concepts like the one that Terry Kaldusdal and John Hallagan had on the Middle Mississippian Native Americans. Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, I had many resources on my Google Classroom for Science and Math. My students loved getting to play the interactive games on topics and view the video clips on various topics. Having had technology resources for the entirety of their academic careers, many of these students tend to engage with this type of instruction. In contemplating the curriculum for Virginia Studies, I think that I would like to create a website similar theirs on the tribes of Virginia as this concept tended to be problematic when I taught it a decade ago.
In my classroom prior to this, cooperative learning and discussions were a daily occurrence as I have always believed that students learn well this way. I am not certain of what that will look like in my classroom this coming year with the guidelines set forth by the CDC, but I want to use that method as the educators in our videos for this week did. I was impressed by the level of engagement that the students had as they discussed their initial questions, hypotheses, and conclusions supported by facts. I loved how the investigation was ongoing as they had formulated new inquiries based on what they had learned. Google Meets here we come, I guess, for these discussions.
Above all else, I want to emphasize to my students that the ¨facts¨ concerning historical events are ever-changing as new details emerge. I always viewed History as being ¨set¨ and unexciting, leading me not to engage with the content material as a student. I want my History classroom to be an intriguing and exciting place to be.
Primary Sources and Maps
Elementary
Watching the Jamestown Map video made me realize that using that map to help show importance of the Bay to John Smith was something I had never thought about. It has me thinking about other ways I can use maps in classroom apart from the obvious. I thought about Lincoln's election of 1860. I could first show a map to show students what the country looked like in terms of how many slave verses free states there were over time. Students would hopefully notice a trend that as time went on there were more free states than slave states. We could discuss how this might make the southern states feel in terms of power within the country as a whole. I would then show them the election map of 1860 and show which states voted for who. I would then ask the student's to discuss how this map helps us to better understand the events that followed the election included the session and eventually leading up to the civil war.

Getting the students to think about maps as informative to readers in multiple ways will help students think historically. They will need to use the map to interpret information at the time as well as make context and connections to events that were occurring. I think using a resource like a map or photograph as opposed to a letter will help scaffold students to ask their own questions and make their own answers instead of always looking back in the text to find the answers. I look forward to applying this to my classroom next year and hope it gives students a better understanding of why the election was so important and why the South felt compelled to leave.
Class Discussion- Food Fight
High
I always talk to students about what it means to be a historian very early in each class. In a high school classroom it becomes about constantly questioning the source. The student should not always trust what is read or what is out there on the internet. Especially in ancient history so much of what we know is based off of one or two sources that historians really run with.

I would create a primary source activity that asked the students to 'tell me what happened'. I think I would make it about something easy to digest- such as a food fight. In groups of 4-5, they would go through some 'eye-witness' accounts, someones confiscated journal, a cell phone video, etc. They would have to tell me who started the food fight, why they did it, and how they should be punished. Obviously since I would be creating it, I would make several viable 'correct' answers.

After, we would discuss everyone's answers. In a perfect world, we get many different answers to the question. We would then talk about how from the same information we came to different conclusions. Then we would talk about which sources were easier to trust and why. This would lead into a talk about how historians do their job and how we can think historically through our year together.
Third Grade teacher for Smyth County Schools
Elementary
I plan on introducing more primary sources to my classroom. At present, secondary sources abound. Numerous sources are made available to students but little focus has been places on bias, perspective, point of view, and overall analysis of these, for the most part, secondary sources. My goal would be to use the use the SCIM-C analysis system as primary and secondary sources are blended thus achieving a thinking student.
4th Grade Teacher
Elementary
The students will now be given the opportunity to delve deeper into the evidence and ask more probing questions relating to historical events.
Historical Thinking in the Library
Elementary
As a librarian, I have a different type of "classroom" in which I have students for just 30 minutes a week. However, I would be able to share primary sources related to the people and events studied at the different grade levels and we could do a scaled down K-W-L chart. For example, students study Rosa Parks--I could take what they know (or think they know) and then share the letter discussed in the video and we come up with--Yes, Rosa Parks was important, but she wasn't the sole cause of the bus boycott. Similar activities could be done with George Washington, Martin Luther King Jr., Jamestown, Civil War, etc. I would also have library books on display to correspond with the topic covered in the lesson so interested students could investigate further.
Historical Thinking in the Library
Elementary
As a librarian, I have a different type of "classroom" in which I have students for just 30 minutes a week. However, I would be able to share primary sources related to the people and events studied at the different grade levels and we could do a scaled down K-W-L chart. For example, students study Rosa Parks--I could take what they know (or think they know) and then share the letter discussed in the video and we come up with--Yes, Rosa Parks was important, but she wasn't the sole cause of the bus boycott. Similar activities could be done with George Washington, Martin Luther King Jr., Jamestown, Civil War, etc.
Teacher
Elementary
Now that I have learned more about historical thinking I know that I must go beyond handing out notes in the classroom. Students need to look at primary resources to get a fuller picture of the event. Time must be given for students to read closely, think, and question. Students must be able to hypothesize and then discuss with other students why they thought the way they did. The teacher must act as a facilitator, but also present the students with enough material for them to be able to question and debate. It is important to show multiple primary resources on the same even to show students that there can be multiple perspectives on the same historical event. I would point out that just because it is in writing does not mean it is true.
Scott County Schools, William Seth McConnell
Elementary
I would use the Montgomery Bus Boycott as the topic. I would use source material from people like Rosa Parks and Martin Luther King as well as source material from the town of Montgomery and newspapers to help students get a well-rounded view of the event from all sides. I would also have students note the connection that the Montgomery Bus Boycott had on the Civil Rights Movement and Martin Luther King Jr.'s insistence that protests be peaceful, yet effective.
Learning to Think Historically
Middle
I teach historical thinking at my middle school and we begin the year with sourcing. I teach what sourcing is and we learn how to find an author, the difference between primary and secondary sources, why the date is important to an investigation, perspective and bias, and significance. Then we cover close reading, contextualization, and finally corroboration. Each subject begins with a central historical question, then we do our investigation, talk it over, and write our own individual essay to answer the question. I learned the process through SHEG or the Stanford History Education Group and their website is an awesome resource.
Andy Warhol and his Art.
Elementary
My class would view an age appropriate video of Andy Warhol's biography. We would then discuss the contents of the video. The students would them be assigned an art project which incorporates the elements and characteristics of Warhol's works. Upon completion, there would be a constructive critique of the students ' work.
third grade teacher
Elementary
Before the sourcing of the event, I would pose a real life situation that most of the students could connect with. For example, "How many of you have to take turns alternating front and back seats with a sibling? How does that make you feel? What would you do if you ALWAYS had to sit in the back seat because you were the youngest? What would you do?" I would have the students discuss this in small groups with their classmates. I would have them come up with a few ways to try to solve the problem to compromise and share with the class. Once these connections are made, I would then introduce primary sources of information about , for example, Rosa Parks. Perhaps a newspaper headline, a video, and a book. We would discuss the context of race relations during this time and make sure there is an understanding of the social situation during that period. I would like to do a reenactment with some students, perhaps modeling what would have been a solution to the problem if things were different or happening today. Lastly, I would have students draw a picture of how they would feel if someone treated them that way during that time period.
Distance Detectives
High
In this era of distance learning, I think it might be interesting to present a historical event that students think they know about. Then, lead them into a discussion and investigation of the historical context of the event, in a similar manner as this course. Later, have them present their own conclusions to the class and support them with evidence.
Thinking Historically
Elementary
In my classroom, I plan to gather and use as many primary resources about each topic as possible. I would like to find more than one source for each in order to provide students with different perspectives on the same issue, while also giving them another piece to corroborate their understandings. Using K-W-L charts goes back a long way, but is still very useful in making connections to prior knowledge and questioning. I liked the SCIM-C method and can see using something similar to lead classroom discussions.
Historical thinking in Middle School
Middle
Two years ago when I was teaching History and Reading in 6th grade students started completing PBA's. These are definitely a source for creativity and higher level thinking on the part of the student. The teachers would share the knowledge with the students first and then would give them the PBA's. As far as me using historical thinking with reading I find video clips, newspaper accounts of different perspectives of a situation or event. I also have my students summarize about events in history and also write creatively about an event or time period.
Mr. Calloway
High
Students are often constructing their current ideas and understanding of events based upon a flood of memes and ideologically driven social posts. Instead of digging deeper to see the facts of the topic, or even moving past a misleading headline, they have often times constructed a echo chamber that builds their understanding without a full perspective of the facts.

This is where the two strategies, SCIM-C and K-W-L, would be advantageous within the classroom. The K-W-L strategy would work great for the examination of legislation/policy, as this would ask them put down their previous sentiment towards a law and then see how that correlates to the facts. The SCIM-C strategy would be useful when examining a social movement or media bias, by having the students work through the steps for multiple perspectives/sources. The initial step would be to provide the students a stronger understanding of an actual primary source, and then build upon the skill contextualizing and sourcing.
Historical Thinking in Middle School
Middle
I have used historical thinking in my US History classes in the past and will continue to use them in the future. One new strategy I intend to use is SCIP-C.
How I would use historical thinking in my Civics classroom.
Middle
I could easily use historical thinking in my founding documents unit. The focus of the unit is on the Constitution and with that I could use excerpts from the Federalist Papers and contrast them with writings of Anti-Federalists like George Mason or Patrick Henry. I could also add in an account of Shay's Rebellion as well as excerpts of the Articles of Confederation to give students an idea of the existing climate and government prior to the Constitution. The final source would be the Preamble and outline of the Bill of Rights of the US Constitution. To make this work within time constraints I could have students break into jigsaw groups at each source and perform a KWL. Upon returning to their home group students could perform the SCIM C method with a focus on corroborating the evidence while looking at the final sources being the Preamble and Bill of Rights.
Thinking Differently About History
Elementary
Historical thinking could be interjected in various ways throughout the classroom. The students could have a journal much like that we read about in history. In these journals, the students could write their own thinking about a certain document as a form of analysis.

Another way that historical thinking can be included into the classroom is through the use of various graphic organizers, such as the KWL chart, the web diagram, flow charts, T maps, and others that are commonly used.

Allowing the students to make connections looking at the raw evidence. The students could construct narratives through reading multiple sources, going to museums, looking a historical sites, and reading through history books. The students would have to be able to understand why the source was created and to think from that person's perspective of how they saw the world.

The students would be allowed to ponder and or examine the sources made available whether or not there are inconsistencies in them or not. The students are going to basically become detectives searching through the past by using multiple ways and multiple resources.
Sped. Teacher
Elementary
I would use a primary source (ex. picture of John Smith being saved by Pocahontas), using the KWL method, and the SCIM C method, I would have students select/assign a partner or group and propose the following questions: "Based on the image you see, what kind of relationship do you think the colonists had with the Powhatan Tribe?" "Do you think all the members of the tribe had that same relationship? " What supports your hypotheses?" They would have time to analyze the picture, create the KWL chart and answer the questions based on their interpretations.We would then come back together as a class and discuss their conclusions.
Confederate Flag - Example of Free Speech or Divisive Symbol
High
While a hot topic in current events right now, I would have students explore the various designs of the Confederate flag and what we know as the Confederate flag today. I could have them make hypotheses of context for these varying flags and why it is such a contentious component in today's climate. I could have images of the flags, writings regarding the designers of these flags and somehow come to an estimated guess as to what this divisive symbol has come to represent and pose suggestions on the appropriate placement of this artifact. (side note: would have to carefully check with administrators to ensure that this subject nature is aligned with standards and the use of valid sources and even give a heads up to parents of this potentially emotional/divisive subject). I think this lesson would definitely engage students and motivate them to ask questions and seek a variety of sources for their exploration.
Virginia Studies Massive Resistance
Elementary
While teaching about the segregation and the desegregation of public schools in Virginia and across the south students will be given primary sources to help expand their understanding and thinking of the Massive Resistance movement. Primary sources that will be used include local historical markers in their community identifying the time of desegregation, examining primary sources from Harry F. Byrd to include speeches and documents where school integration and Civil Rights were discussed dated 1954, 1957, and 1961 to identify Byrd's position on the topic and to understand the thought process behind Massive Resistance. After students have a chance to learn facts about Massive Resistance and examine primary sources students will discuss what led to Massive Resistance and establish why Massive Resistance failed to keep public schools segregated.
Carolyn Harris
Elementary
As a first grade teacher this class will broaden my understanding of historical thinking. It will give me the skills necessary to teach/reach my students. Students will be given multiple sources for research when learning about famous Americans or events. I understand historical thinking develops readers, thinkers, and better citizens. At the beginning of the year it might look a little different as students are not developed readers. However, students will be given multiple critical thinking activities to make their learning visible. I will have class discussions that promote questions and deeper learning of events of the past.
Teacher- Wendy Boyd
Elementary
I would try to apply historical thinking in my classroom during my VA Studies lessons. I could have them look at maps of Jamestown when it was first settled by Europeans. I could have them read journal entries about what was happening in Jamestown and compare it to the letters they were told to write about Jamestown to encourage more Europeans wanting to leave England and settle in Jamestown. I could have students read newspaper articles about how the settlers felt about England trying to remain in control in Jamestown. The options are endless.
Tiffany Smith
Elementary
I loved the videos with examples of how to apply strategies like the SCRIM-C and KWL within the classroom. I often expose students to these sources but want to have them do more work with the various sources to examine the WHY and also to compare multiple sources from a singular event.
Specific questions that make students dive more in depth with artwork from the past.
High
I teach U.S. History, Civics and will be teaching World History in the coming school year. There is a ton of period artwork that can have multiple different meanings, that can answer more questions than you can think of. I will have my students come up with their own interpretations of the artwork and then compare to how the artwork was actually supposed to be seen.
Was Westward Expansion a movement that caused a lot of the cultural problems?
High
The concept of Westward Expansion created problems between the Native Americans and the Settlers. These problems could have been avoided and the entire outlook of the early stages of the United States could look completely different had the settlers not been influenced by greed and selfish intentions.
Dakota West- Historical Escape Room
Middle
Using primary source documents, students find clues that lead to working on tasks such as the SCIM-C model or KWL charts and eventually lead to the students "escaping" the room. This is an activity that I have used in my teaching experience and can be used periodically throughout the school year on each unit, and the activity can be tweaked each time to keep it interesting.
Teacher
High
I will use these skills to help my students focus more on the why of history and not just the what. As an AP and Pre-AP teacher my curriculum focuses on the students understanding and applying "historical thinking skills." I will use theses methods to help them better understand primary and secondary sources and to better understand why and how things fit into the broader world and time.
Applying Historical Thinking to 5th Grade VA Social Studies SOL's
Elementary
Helping students use historical thinking skills is part of the VA SOL's USI.1 a through j. This standard goes into extreme detail as to what historical thinking skills we as teachers need to help our students develop. The sample analysis tools as written in the USI Framework almost directly correlates to the five keys of historic thinking examined in the video.

For me, this involves using a plethora of primary and secondary sources as I teach throughout the year. I also try to steer my students into asking critical questions sources to help them better grapple with who wrote it, why did they write it, what did they hope to accomplish, whose ends does it serve, and so forth. I also try to use a good deal of photographs, videos, and primary voice recordings when possible to help my students get a better 'feel' for the historical context that events were occurring. I am very selective about the use of such resources because I want my students to develop the critical thinking skills needed to be critical students of history. I have found that it is crucial to allow my students the opportunities to compare and contrast multiple sources in an effort to help them question each sources orgins, intent, and ends. One last thing I try to get my students to ask is how does that event impact our lives currently. I want my students to draw from history connections to their lives.
Band
High
In the band world, so much music was written by composers who had so many ups and downs in their lives. When my Concert Band learns a new piece of music, it can be composed in many different "styles". For example, in some of Gustav Mahler's most notable works, most of the themes are sad and depressing. How do we learn more about this? We can use primary sources such as the score itself, letters to his wife, journals, etc to further explore his emotional wellbeing. We can also use secondary sources such as scholarly research articles to bring this all together. This all ties back into helping the students further connect to and understand the music that they will inevitably perform at the concert.
Paired Passages Study
High
I teach high school English right now, and the way I'd apply this concept in my current classroom is through use of paired passages--which we already do in English--but with a different emphasis on the relevant historical context of the 2 authors and how that impacted their respective biases. One pairing that comes to mind is Mark Twain's "War Prayer" with Oliver w. Holmes' "God save the flag." 2 eloquent pieces coming from antipodal biases on the intrinsic nature of warfare. Relevant historical context would include Twain's brief and conflicted service in the confederacy--from which he learned more about who he didn't want to be than who he wished to emulate, contrasted against Holmes' glorification of his son's Civil War efforts for the Union side--vicarious and much on the more defensible side of history. How did their experiences turn Holmes into a rabid hawk and Twain into the ultimate dove?
Primary Sources
Elementary
Using a KWL chart, have a discussion about a primary source and jot down student thought on the chart. A good example would be the use of the Rosa Parks event and the letter that was written prior to that event. We would summarize, put into context, and infer what might have happened differently if the letter had been acted upon by the reader.
Rubric
High
This is a switch for me to be thinking about this from the perspective of high school students. This is only my second year in a high school. I have learned about the importance of a rubric and letting the students know my expectations but also have the freedom to be creative. I have not thought of using the idea of a KWL in high school but I intend to try it.
Historical Thinking
Elementary
I have been a middle school English teacher my entire career until last year. Last year and this year I have been blessed to get out of my comfort zone and teach all subjects. The most interesting of which is VA HIstory. I love the idea of having students compare and contrast written materials such as this account of Thomas Jefferson. Our next unit is Jamestown and I am now motivated to find articles /letters such as this from possible people in the VA Company. I think Newsela , even though we don't subscribe , could be an asset for assignments like this.
Reconstruction post civil war era
Middle
I had my students look at the facts we could find and then, ask questions out of the box. Like Did all Southern families stay at their home areas. What happened to the slaves after they were released. Did they go North or stay in the South. We looked at all of the types of laws and changes that are documented and did some KWL charts on what they wanted to know more about. We then applied modern technology and researched one question at a time. Although we did not find exact answers it gave the students a feeling of accomplishment to look further and search out questions not normally asked.
Classroom Connections
Elementary
I'd like to use the KWL and the SCIM-C in my room with students to help them begin to think about history differently. Using primary resources to encourage them to look with a different perspective of some of the historical concepts that they've been taught. I'd like to see my students become critical thinkers and ask more questions about what is being taught so that we can all learn together.
Classroom Connections
Elementary
I'd like to use the KWL and the SCIM-C in my room with students to help them begin to think about history differently. Using primary resources to encourage them to look with a different perspective of some of the historical concepts that they've been taught. I'd like to see my students become critical thinkers and ask more questions about what is being taught so that we can all learn together.
Who, What, Where , When, Why and How
Elementary
I really liked what the article said about how historical thinking not only teaches the students about history but it teaches then another way to understand the world around them. And to consider the perspective of others and not just assume that one account is completely wrong because it does not match everyone elses. And this is something that our world today with all the media and facebook has seem to forgotten.
I like the idea of taking two completely different primary sources from very different times and having the students analyze and examine the pictures perhaps. A picture from the Revolutionary War and one from the Civil War. See if the students can figure out the what and how. Answer the who, what , where , when , why and how. That would get the them really thinking about each time period. A good introduction to that particular era.
Special Education Teacher
Elementary
In Virginia Studies, it is essential to provide students with primary sources like maps, quotes from people and context for those quotes, as well as questions to use when evaluating the sources. I will gather primary sources and provide my students with graphic organizers that will guide their questioning and be a tool to display their understanding.
The Mykonos Vase
Elementary
We are studying Ancient History and we will be talking about the Trojan War soon. Students will already have read about the Trojan War in their text book and answered questions when we meet- as we only meet 1x/wk
We would attempt to answer the big question- Did the Trojan War Actually Happen?
Using the Mykonos Vase which is the earliest object depicting the wooden horse, we will use the SCIM-C. I am looking forward in doing this with my class this week!
Sealston Elementary
Elementary
Allowing my students more time to investigate different images and evidence without me telling them what it is. Before we dive into the facts we need to know, what can they figure out from different pieces of evidence from history and what connections can they make using their background knowledge.
Historical Thinking in the Classroom
Elementary
After reading the articles and watching the videos in this module, I will definitely include more primary sources in my classroom, particularly in relation to specific events, so that my students will see/hear another perspective besides their textbook.
How can historical thinking be applied in the classroom?
Elementary
I will continue to offer students a historical question to think about as they analyze primary sources. The SCIM model really gave me a good idea of questions the students should be thinking about as they analyze primary and secondary sources. I will also have students carefully consider any biases, differing perspectives, and point of view when they analyze a document. I will have students ask questions across multiple sources to look for points that agree or disagree with each other. I think the biggest take-away from this module is how to engage the students by having them think like a historian and to teach them to question--as well as analyze- documents to find the answers.
New Nation Documents
Elementary
I would get the 3 main documents that were used to form our government: Articles of Conferderation, Declaration of Idependence, and the US Constitution and compare and constract why the author wrote each of them. Why each did or didn't work and what was important then and what is important now.
Application
High
I really enjoyed this approach. Often times, we teach, as we were taught. We tend to teach others in a manner that we feel most comfortable in. I think that this approach is a welcomed break from the chronological, and linear approach to "great man" history. Standardized High Stakes testing, in my opinion, has lead to a teaching of the test, and a "regurgitation" of the material. Students are memorizing dates, vocab words, documents, accomplishments, but aren't learning the material in depth. Students are not developing a historical mind, and this generation, perhaps more than any other, does not posses critical thinking skills. I feel that developing critical thinking prowess is one of, if not the most, important things we can teach students who want to continue their education. This will help me present information, in a different manner, and allow another way for students to learn. In today's era of individualization, and accommodations this will be beneficial to all of us in the long run. with the SCI-M etc.
Woodrow Wilson Middle School Roanoke City
Middle
I would take the topic of the "Lost Colony" and analyze primary documents such as maps, paintings from John White, readings, etc. and have students act as detectives to try and solve the mystery of the " Lost Colony".
Students would write hypothesis and try to support their answers with research from the documents.
Who, What, Why: Jamestown Re-studied
Elementary
As an add-on to a trip to Jamestown, 4th graders will be brought to a table with various tools and other items that were used to build and to live in Jamestown. Each student will choose an item and make a guess about what it is, who would have used it, and why it is relevant to today. Each student will have 3 days to prepare a presentation that tells the class what the item is, who would have used it, why it was used, and how it was used. Presentation should include powerpoint and other visuals to help students understand the topic. Finally, the student will compare it to a present day object and call on various classmates to make guesses on the who's and how's of its use in Jamestown compared to what we can use now.
What Is This??
Elementary
Provide students with various "artifacts" related to American Indians, Jamestown Settlers, and Africans. Allow them to examine the artifacts determine which group(s) of people might of used it, what was it, how was it made? Why was it important to them? What would we use today?
Jamestown Settlement
Elementary
I teach Virginia Studies and we just finished our unit on geography. When we begin our unit on Jamestown (the end of October) , I would love to try out the lesson that Stacey Hoeflich did with the primary source investigation using John Smith’s 1612 map of Virginia, to help her students understand European settlement of Virginia. I think that lesson was a great hook for the unit on Jamestown and to get students excited about learning. I think I already use the SCIM-C model (at least parts of it), but I like the method as a whole and would love to utilize that with our upcoming unit on Virginia's Indians. We usually do an artifact investigation, so this method will fit well with that. I think the debriefing/discussion/reflection is very rich and really pulls everything together.
Jamestown life
Elementary
Present students with: maps, journal entries, artifacts, pictures etc.
Ask students to describe the daily lives of the early settlers in Jamestown Virginia.
Boston Massacre viewpoints
Middle
Start the lesson by having students look at an ambiguous image (hidden picture) that shows a different picture depending on the way you look at it. After showing the image for a few seconds, remove it and ask what students saw. Discuss with students why they think people saw different things. Possibly talk about the internet sensations of what color dress or what word was said. Remind students that if a crime happens, people would give testimony on what they saw, believing it to be accurate.
Next, tell students they are going to be detectives to find out who gave the order to fire during the Boston Massacre. Have half the students read the account given by Captain Thomas Prescott. Have the other half read the account of the Boston Massacre printed in the Boston Gazette. Facilitate a discussion using one of the Historical Thinking processes. In the SCIM C model, have students explain they type of document, who wrote it, who is their audience, what attitudes might they have about what was happening.
Next, have students put these two sources in context of what they know has been happening in that time period. Then ask students what interpretations and or inferences may be drawn. The teacher can then offer information from a couple other primary sources that also disagree whether Captain Prescott ordered the soldiers to fire.
Ask students if they have further questions. Circle back to the investigative question of who gave the order to fire and ask students if they can answer this definitively.
History: As It Is, Was, And Shall Be!
Elementary
Historical thinking is an eye opening way for a teacher as well as their students to experience a lesson and become more personally involved with the accounts. Presenting more than text books and "facts" but actual primary sources for examination and inspection, as well as scrutinization allows for varying viewpoints and whole group discussion versus lecturing. Small groups is the norm in my classroom setup and students think pair and share in many subjects. Thinking historically works very well with this model and allows the teacher time to circulate and discuss with the groups as they investigate their sources. It also allows the grouping of stronger critical thinkers in a class to inspire less courageous students to trust their own opinions and thoughts once they find their own voice.
Nile River Valley
High
Carving out time in each unit consistently throughout the year to have kids analyze sources and create the habit of thinking like a historian. One idea might be to have students (9th grade) work in partners to read the excerpt from the Hymn of the Nile and analyze a map of Ancient Egypt. Give students a SCIM-C graphic organizer to fill in as they read/look at the primary sources? When students are finished using the SCIM-C method (or KWL depending on level of students), come together as a group to discuss answers/findings.
Primary Sources – 1) Excerpt from Hymn of the Nile 2) Map image of Ancient Egypt.
Driving Questions: Why was the Nile River so important to the Egyptians? How did the Nile River affect life in Egypt? How do you know that? Why does it matter?
Nile River Valley
High
Have students (9th grader) work in partners to read the excerpt from the Hymn of the Nile and analyze a map of Ancient Egypt. Give students a SCIM-C graphic organizer to fill in as they read/look at the primary sources? When students are finished using the SCIM-C method (or KWL depending on level of students), come together as a group to discuss answers/findings.

Primary Sources – 1) Excerpt from Hymn of the Nile 2) Map image of Ancient Egypt.

Driving Questions: Why was the Nile River so important to the Egyptians? How did the Nile River affect life in Egypt? How do you know that? Why does it matter?
Adult Education Teacher
GED Teacher - Virginia Department of Corrections
I want history to "come alive" for my adult education students. Most of my students faced negative school experiences in the past. My students must pass a history (social studies) portion of the GED. By using primary sources, I hope to make history relevant. I plan to continue connecting the past to the present. My goal, is to help my students uncover a "perspective" of history that they haven't considered before.
Historical thinking
Middle
I need to do a better job of having my students use primary sources in their analysis of people and events. I will use what I have learned to teach my students about primary sources and how to interpret them. We will go over "sourcing" and how each source plays a role in interpreting what happened. My students will begin to develop a deeper understanding of the event as they look at it from multiple perspectives.
Historical thinking module 1 - Franco-Prussian war 1860s
High
After discussing the history of the war, I also know of a short story called Two Friends, which is set during this war. After reading the story I would have the students discuss why the two men that are fishing are killed by the German commander, how is that fair? I would have them write a letter “home” to their spouse about being one of the German soldiers that had to execute the fishermen. Getting them to feel involved into the war.
Civil War
Elementary
Students need to understand that races were divided at that time, especially in the South. It is my job to make sure they understand that those thoughts may not have been the "right" way of thinking, but that a lot of people felt that way which explains the "prejudice" and "discrimination of the time period". It would also help them see why things happened, and that we as a society have come a long way since then; thus, learning from the past's mistakes.
United States Westward Expansion
Middle
As an introduction to my Westward Expansion in The United States History unit, I would gather a variety of primary source materials related to this topic and time period. It is important that there are many primary sources and a wide variety, so that my students understand many aspects of the time. The activity would involve students rotating through stations to actively engage with the source and brainstorm what the primary source suggest about the time period. I would letters, pictures, wanted posters, journals, photograph generally all about the reason that motivated Americans to move west. Students would actively discuss and engage in the "what" of historical thinking". Two great objectives would be covered with this lesson. Students would begin the process of learning about the world through primary source materials, while introducing themselves to the unit.
Historical Thinking in the Classroom
Elementary
Second graders love to look at old pictures. Depending on what we are learning, students can study a picture and the teacher can ask open ended questions regarding the picture. Such as, when do you think this picture was taken? How do you know? What are the people wearing? Why do you think they are dressed that way? How do they live? How can you tell?
4th Grade Teacher
Elementary
Thinking historically during VA Studies would surely increase the students' understanding of the material. Rather than drilling the dates, events, and historical figures, I will encourage more analysis of primary and secondary resources. This will allow the students to experience the material on a more relevant and personal level, which is much more likely to "stick" than simply memorization. As I give them more opportunities to interpret history for themselves, they will be more self-motivated in their learning. I will work to find images for interpretation, articles to respond to, readings to discuss as a whole group and in small group, multiple sources about the same topic, as well as locate artifacts for the students to analyze. By increasing their opportunities to think historically, students will not only be more successful in understanding history, but also in navigating the world around them.
Historical Thinking in Third Grade
Elementary
I love the step by step instructions of using the SCIM-C method in looking at historical data. It gives the students tangible steps to follow when looking at a historical resource. Knowing the author's purpose and looking for any bias within the resource is going to be something that I will have more of my student do. I also think that the examples of the letter from Joann Robinson and the "textbook history" of Rosa Parks is a great example of showing these historical methods that should be used daily.
Teacher
High
I will continue to incorporate primary sources as often as possible to make history more real to students. If they can immerse themselves in first hand accounts, photos, and articles from varying points of view, they can gain a better understanding of why and how events unfolded. Learning to think historically can help them understand why history repeats itself; it is a skill most people don't learn, so they are unable to prevent the inevitable.
US History teacher
Middle
I already use KWL charts in my instruction, and also like to use primary sources "kids as historian" lessons on topics such as Salem Witch trials (analyzing testimony, maps of the village and charts about farm size decreasing by 1692) and the Boston Massacre (analyzing the purposes of two different visual depictions of the events) as way to encourage historical thinking. I have not used the SCIM-C method but find this an interesting tool. My goal as a history teachers is for students to understand the world around them through looking at events of the past as detectives--making sense of what happened through different perspectives and sources and through a process of scrutiny and evaluation.
The American Flag
  • Pre-K
  • Elementary
In this lesson about the American Flag we will first begin by looking at the American Flag. We will observe what we see. We will talk about places we see the flag and why it might be displayed waving in the air. We will talk about the colors and for older children ask why there are different colors. What could the colors represent? We will count how many stripes we see. Are the number of stripes important? Is there a reason why there are 13 stripes. What about the stars? What could the stars represent? Why is it important to have a flag?
Runaway Slave Ad
Elementary
Since we are getting ready to discuss slavery in my classroom, we will study a runaway slave ad. Students will be given a guided question along with several other questions to give them a purpose for their research.
Teacher - 8th Grade - World Connections
Middle
I will incorporate aspects of the SCIM-C method more thoughtfully/purposefully. I also will attempt to do K-W-L charts a little more frequently than I do already.
7th grade English/Reading teacher
Middle
Two years ago when I was teaching History and Reading in 6th grade students started completing PBA's. These are definitely a source for creativity and higher level thinking on the part of the student. The teachers would share the knowledge with the students first and then would give them the PBA's. As far as me using historical thinking with reading I find video clips, newspaper accounts of different perspectives of a situation or event. I also have my students summarize about events in history and also write creatively about an event or time period.
Reading and Social Studies 6 teacher
Middle
I integrate history teaching in my reading lessons. Instead of giving my students so many articles to read, I need to provide more primary source reading samples and allow the students opportunities to analyze, make claims search for evidence and perhaps write about their conclusions.
Applying Historical Thinking to the Classroom
Elementary
In my fifth grade classroom, we are beginning our unit on the Civil War. To help my students think historically, I will give each group multiple primary sources - a runaway slave advertisement, advertisements for pro-slavery and anti-slavery meetings, and newspaper clippings. I will have my students use SCIM-C followed by a KWL chart to help them make inferences about the different viewpoints of northerners and southerners and different events that led to war. Throughout the unit I can begin the lesson with a primary source that relates to the battle or event I am teaching about that day and we can use SCIM to analyze the source before beginning the lesson. My students have their own chromebooks as well and can use them to have access to multiple primary sources in higher definition than a printout.
Building historical thinkers
Middle
After completing the module on historical thinking, I definitely will include the SCIM-C strategy in our next DBQ which will be on the topic of Valley Forge. I believe that in addition to the guiding questions provided in the set, using the SCIM -C will help students interpret the past and make connections to the broader topic of the Revolutionary War.
Historical Thinking Primary Source Activity
Middle
I teach 7th graders, so I would perhaps take a short excerpt from the Federalist Papers and have students examine it to determine the key ideas that are being advocated. After determining that these ideas found their way into the Constitution, students would have an idea that there was not much debate about the early government. They could record the main ideas in a simple graphic organizer.Then, I would give them a similar excerpt from the Anti-Federalist writings and have them read and consider the arguments there. They would place the main ideas in a graphic organizer that helps them see that there have always been differing perspectives in U.S. history. I would conclude with some thoughtful questions, done in writing and then discussed verbally. These would have students consider why there were at least two major schools of thought in early America, but only one is remembered as the "right" view. This could also lead to a discussion of how secondary sources chose to remember this era and enshrine the Federalist Papers as "good" and the Anti-Federalist writings as "bad".Students would leave with a better appreciation of thinking if a historical source is the only perspective available, and why it became the one they read about in their textbook.
Conditions inTextile Mills in the late 1800s
Elementary
We have been studying the working conditions in the Lowell Mills in Masschussets in the late 1800s. My students have read letters from the women to their families that describe the conditions in the mills and their living conditions. It would give my students a more comprehensive understanding of the culture of the time to read from other sources such as newspapers like the Voice of Industry or the Lowell Offering which give differing perspectives on the situation and conditions.
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Comments

Was very neat to see how teacher of different contents and grade levels can make this work!

WOW!! reading the comments of how other teachers implement different strategies in their classroom was exciting. There was so many great ideas from everyone!! I want to try different ones and speaking for myself I get in a rut and caught up in doing things the same way..... I look forward to hearing some more input to make me a better educator!!

I'm a little behind, but enjoyed reading everyone's comments and agree that I'm glad we are all in this together! I really enjoyed module 1 and am excited to learn more in module 2.

I thought this was great, and was present well in breaking down the steps. Being able to help students think historically develops better perspective and deeper understanding of history.

You make a great point about bringing it in personally for students. I like how you would ask them to think about alternating seats with their siblings. It helps students to understand better if something is relatable for them!

As a relatively young nation, I believe that the United States of America is the most enigmatic story of a nation in the world. For starters, America was land that was discovered "mistakenly" - a discovery based on miscalculation. So when we consider the oddity of its beginnings, it is extremely special. The wave of settlers that came to America and their riveting experiences are a testimony to the indomitable human spirit - to conquer, to survive, and to succeed. When I think of a good example for the saying, "failure is not an option," I think about the early settlers. They toiled, they suffered, they left their old life behind into the unknown. The Revolutionary War was an epic war, just as worthy as the Epic of Gilgamesh (figuratively speaking). As a story, it is extremely dramatic, suspenseful, and full of cloak and dagger action. The odds were against the would-be Americans, they were pitted against an indestructible giant, Britain, and yet, the Americans won the war. From a small settlement in Jamestown, America grew to be the greatest democratic country in the world, extremely wealthy, progressive, and powerful. Then the racial divide festered the young nation. The history surrounding the Jim Crow era is one of the darkest in human history. It is not genocide, no, and yet, its wickedness is undeniably self-destructive in and of itself. America, as it stands today, still battles its dark past. It is a most beautiful country, a true land of the free and the brave, and yet, racism persists. It's the balwark of freedom and democracy in the world, and yet, it also harbors hate against its own people. The civil rights tensions in this country continue to evolve, they have not been resolved. These issues fuel politics in this country. It's a big business and also it's a big headache. The oddity of American history - the richness of its history is unrivaled around the world. This country continues to evolve. We are advanced in many ways (technology, economics etc) and behind at the same time (we have not had a female president yet, for example). We live and make history, as we speak, in this very moment.

Pages

Instructions

Congratulations on completing the module! Read and comment on classmates’ ideas here. Return to My Course to move to the next module.

Examples of Historical Thinking
These examples of historical thinking from Teachinghistory.org present a variety of primary sources (searchable by topic and time period) along with video of a historian's interpretation.

Using Primary Sources
Also from Teachinghistory.org, these examples of how to analyze primary sources can be sorted by images, film, music, text, maps and many more.

Beyond the Bubble
From Sam Wineburg at Stanford University, Beyond the Bubble, lays out how historical thinking skills like sourcing, contextualization, and corroboration can be assessed. Assessments are linked to Common Core standards.