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Through Their Eyes—Letters from Soldiers in the Civil War

Glimpse war through the eyes of soldiers.

Soldiers’ letters offer students an intimate view of the impact of war. In this lesson, students analyze letters written by soldiers during the Civil War.

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Teach Students how to Analyze Sources and Give Them a Peek inside their Teacher’s Soul

In a previous post, I discussed how history is a verb, not a noun. What does “doing history” look like in a classroom? Here is a fun activity teachers can use to introduce students to the skill of analyzing primary sources.

Historians dissect primary sources such as letters, diaries, court documents, or song lyrics in their quest to interpret the past. They systematically examine each component of the source in order to make sense of the whole. Read more

Time Traveler’s Tool Box: Synthesis and Inference Activity

In honor of my favorite president–Mr. Lincoln–here is an activity that gives student historians practice dissecting primary sources, extracting meaning from them, and communicating that meaning in a coherent paragraph. In commemoration of Black History Month, the subject of Lincoln’s words is slavery. Read more