TeachersFirst's American Presidents Related Resources

Other TeachersFirst Special Topics Collections

Whether you are celebrating Presidents Day or learning about the Executive Branch of the U.S. government, this collection of reviewed resources about presidents provides a rich starting point for research, class study, or multimedia projects. If this list is too broad, use the search tool at the left of this page to find resources on a specific president or within a certain grade range. You may also be interested in TeachersFirst's Resources for U.S. Elections or TeachersFirst's Resources for U.S. Presidential Inaugurations.

 

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Tom Richey's YouTube Channel for AP History - Tom Richey

Grades
9 to 12
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This engaging YouTube channel offers an excellent variety of videos for AP U.S. and European History and AP Government. Additional offerings include review sessions about South Carolina...more
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This engaging YouTube channel offers an excellent variety of videos for AP U.S. and European History and AP Government. Additional offerings include review sessions about South Carolina history. Each video explains different topics in history through lecture. Videos range in length from one minute to over an hour. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view them at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.
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tag(s): 1700s (29), 1800s (49), 1900s (37), advanced placement (24), american revolution (86), black history (59), colonial america (105), england (55), france (39), germany (28), greece (27), greeks (32), industrial revolution (26), jefferson (19), romans (35), rome (26), russia (36), spain (8), video (278), washington (32), world war 1 (56)

In the Classroom

Mark this one in your teacher favorites to find videos to use in AP History and Government classes. Be sure to share videos with students and parents, especially videos with study plans for AP tests. Create a link to this YouTube channel on your class website or blog for students to access at home.

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State of the Union Bingo - National Constitution Center

Grades
7 to 12
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Engage student interest in the annual State of the Union Address with this Bingo lesson plan. Background activities provide historical knowledge of the traditions of the speech. Follow...more
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Engage student interest in the annual State of the Union Address with this Bingo lesson plan. Background activities provide historical knowledge of the traditions of the speech. Follow up activities guide students through understanding current events.

tag(s): presidents (121), speeches (19)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of this free lesson plan as a supplement to your current events lessons. The Bingo sheet was created in 2012, you may need to modify some terms to adapt to current events. Divide students into groups and compare State of the Union addresses from throughout any one president's terms. Have students create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Easel.ly, reviewed here, or Venngage, reviewed here.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Primary Source Sets - Library of Congress

Grades
4 to 12
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This collection of primary sources from the Library of Congress is organized around key topics and themes in American History. View Primary Source Set titles in alphabetical order from...more
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This collection of primary sources from the Library of Congress is organized around key topics and themes in American History. View Primary Source Set titles in alphabetical order from Abraham Lincoln through Women's Suffrage. Choose any topic to view Teacher's Guides and analysis tools including graphic organizers for students. Sort information to find materials meeting Common Core Standards, State Standards, or national organization standards.

tag(s): 20th century (51), authors (123), black history (59), civil war (143), constitution (87), hispanic (17), jefferson (19), lincoln (86), new deal (6), primary sources (92), segregation (16), thanksgiving (32), veterans (19), washington (32), westward expansion (29), womens suffrage (25), wright brothers (19)

In the Classroom

When introducing a new unit, show students photos from the era and have them describe what they see and what period they think it is. Find plenty of questions and activities (including a blank analysis organizer for students) in the Teacher's Guides. Also look at Library of Congress: for Teachers, reviewed here. Encourage your students to use this tool for projects. Challenge students to find a photo (legally permitted for reproduction), and then narrate the photo as if it is a news report. Have students create a multimedia presentation using Voicethread, reviewed here. This tool allows users to narrate a picture. Include this site on your class webpage for students and parents to access as a reference.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Earliest Voices - Michigan State University

Grades
6 to 12
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We are accustomed to hearing the voices of celebrities and important leaders today, but it has been less than 150 years since the invention of sound recording technology. Earliest Voices...more
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We are accustomed to hearing the voices of celebrities and important leaders today, but it has been less than 150 years since the invention of sound recording technology. Earliest Voices is an archive of recordings from the earliest years between 1877 and 1927. Hear Booker T. Washington speak about race relations or William Jennings Bryan's "Cross of Gold" speech. Listen to Thomas Edison (who was the inventor of the technology) speak about advances in technology and electricity. Find a short biography and images along with the recordings. A Real Player plugin is required.

tag(s): inventors and inventions (93), oral history (12), politics (97), sound (103)

In the Classroom

Bringing early voices to life in the classroom can help connect students with these important figures from history. Do their voices sound as you expected? Along with the audio records, you'll find important contextual information about early audio recordings, and about the circumstances surrounding each speech or recording.

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George Washington's Mount Vernon - Mount Vernon

Grades
6 to 12
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Take a virtual tour of Mount Vernon, the home of the first President of the United States, George Washington. Beautifully executed, and packed with special features, the tour is billed...more
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Take a virtual tour of Mount Vernon, the home of the first President of the United States, George Washington. Beautifully executed, and packed with special features, the tour is billed as the "second best way to visit Mount Vernon," and doesn't disappoint. Be sure and watch the tutorial so you don't miss any of the many tips and tricks to get the most out of your virtual tour.

tag(s): 1700s (29), presidents (121), virtual field trips (52)

In the Classroom

Ideal for use on an interactive white board, or for students to access individually, this virtual tour has lots of features. You can explore the buildings, zoom in on items in the buildings, access stories and discussions that highlight features of the property and the daily lives of those who lived at Mount Vernon. There are additional links to lesson plans and other student resources.

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Zoom In! - Education Development Center

Grades
5 to 12
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Zoom In! is a set of digital tools that support social studies teachers in aligning teaching with the Common Core Literacy Standards. In each lesson, students solve a historical problem...more
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Zoom In! is a set of digital tools that support social studies teachers in aligning teaching with the Common Core Literacy Standards. In each lesson, students solve a historical problem by analyzing and collecting evidence, organizing research, and creating a rough draft communicating the solution. Create your teacher account to begin. Browse through 10 lessons with topics as diverse as propaganda and Paul Revere, Labor on the World War II Homefront, Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers, and music in the Vietnam War. Create a class within each lesson to receive a class code for student access. View more information about this resource on their YouTube channel, here. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): american revolution (86), civil war (143), constitution (87), immigrants (22), immigration (59), lincoln (86), slavery (68), vietnam (36), westward expansion (29), world war 2 (142)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of these free lesson plans for use in teaching social studies aligned to Common Core Standards. Even if you cannot use whole lessons, browse through to find resources to add to your current lessons. Create classes and assign different lessons to different groups of students based on ability and interest. After completing a unit, have students make a multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Edge tools, reviewed here.

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The Roosevelts - PBS

Grades
7 to 12
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PBS offers this series of lessons aligned to their popular mini-series, The Roosevelts. All lessons include alignment to standards, background information, discussion questions, and...more
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PBS offers this series of lessons aligned to their popular mini-series, The Roosevelts. All lessons include alignment to standards, background information, discussion questions, and evaluation rubrics. Choose from full-length Lesson Plans or Snapshot Lessons containing quick, adaptable activities for classroom use.
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tag(s): 1900s (37), presidents (121), roosevelt (16)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the free lesson plans offered to supplement your current lessons based on the Roosevelt family. Have groups of students complete different Snapshot Lessons then share with the class. Have students make a multimedia presentation using one of the many TeachersFirst Multimedia Edge tools, reviewed here. Have students use Fakebook, reviewed here, to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about a member of the Roosevelt family.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Help Lincoln Get to the White House - National Park Service

Grades
5 to 12
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This interactive timeline shows the route Lincoln took to become the President. Along the way, answer questions about his progress and life. ...more
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This interactive timeline shows the route Lincoln took to become the President. Along the way, answer questions about his progress and life.

tag(s): elections (76), lincoln (86), presidents (121)

In the Classroom

Have younger students create an online book of images and captions about Lincoln's life using Bookr, reviewed here, (Bookr uses Flickr images, so you must first upload or find the images on Flickr). For older students - challenge cooperative learning groups (or partners) to create a similar story about another president using pictures, themes, and other prompts generated by the site StoryBird, reviewed here. To find Creative Commons images for student projects (with credit, of course), try Compfight, reviewed here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Been Here So Long - Slave Narratives - New Deal Network

Grades
8 to 12
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Read seventeen of the more than 2,000 first-person accounts of what it was like to live in bondage. These seventeen narratives, told by aging African Americans during the New Deal ...more
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Read seventeen of the more than 2,000 first-person accounts of what it was like to live in bondage. These seventeen narratives, told by aging African Americans during the New Deal era in America, are remarkable and are accompanied by teaching resources, photos, and suggested projects.

tag(s): 1930s (14), african american (110), black history (59), narrative (21), new deal (6), primary sources (92), roosevelt (16), slavery (68)

In the Classroom

There are lessons and projects for the narratives, many of which take four or more class periods. Try something that won't eat up so much time: Choose one of the narratives and use your interactive whiteboard or projector to share it with your class. Then, as suggested in the lesson plans, have "a discussion about the strengths and limitations of using the ex-slave narratives and other oral histories as primary sources in the study of history." Have students break into small groups and have each group read two of the narratives. Have them make comparisons of those two narratives and the one shared with the entire class, using an online tool such as the Interactive Three Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here. Then have the class share out and find commonalities for all the narratives (other than they were all slaves). Use this site in an American History class studying the New Deal and the 1930s or in any language arts or social studies class during Black History Month. These narratives are about the "regular" people, not the famous people usually read about.

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Sunnylands Civics Games - The Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands

Grades
4 to 12
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Sunnylands Civics Games offers a small but excellent selection of games about the Constitution and related topics. Topics include Branches of Power, The First Amendment, the Bill of...more
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Sunnylands Civics Games offers a small but excellent selection of games about the Constitution and related topics. Topics include Branches of Power, The First Amendment, the Bill of Rights, and more. You can try to be the leader of the Legislative Branch. Choose three main issues and the most productive way to succeed in your cause. Most activities begin with a short video followed by questions. Most activities also include a glossary of terms used.

tag(s): bill of rights (29), branches of government (47), constitution (87), game based learning (128), supreme court (23)

In the Classroom

Use the Sunnylands Civics Games to introduce Constitution-related topics to your class using an interactive whiteboard or projector. View videos together and pause as needed to discuss information. Challenge students to try the interactive activities on individual computers or at home. Have students use Fakebook, reviewed here, to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about Americans described in the games. Have students create timelines (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles, reviewed here, to trace the path of a bill or the writing of the Constitution.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Sakura: Cherry Blossoms as Living Symbols of Friendship - Library of Congress

Grades
8 to 12
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In 1912, the city of Tokyo, Japan donated 3,000 cherry trees to the city of Washington, DC, as a symbol of friendship. The trees, planted around the Capitol's tidal basin, ...more
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In 1912, the city of Tokyo, Japan donated 3,000 cherry trees to the city of Washington, DC, as a symbol of friendship. The trees, planted around the Capitol's tidal basin, have become part of a treasured tradition. Viewing the cherry blossoms in the spring draws millions of visitors. The Library of Congress offers a brief history of the cherry blossoms and connects cherry trees to their cultural significance in Japanese culture.

tag(s): japan (60), japanese (45), trees (29), washington (32)

In the Classroom

Cherry Blossoms are both a symbol of spring, and a legacy of the historical relationship between the people of Japan and the United States. Make a brief detour during a lesson on Asian history, on the development of Washington, D.C. as the US capital, or on important American cultural symbols, and look at the roots of this tradition. There are primary sources to explore, and links to contemporary photos of the Cherry Blossom Festival.

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Typeform - Robert Munoz

Grades
K to 12
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Typeform offers an interactive method to ask and answer questions online. Use the form builder to create visually rich and engaging questions. Drag and drop features make it easy to...more
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Typeform offers an interactive method to ask and answer questions online. Use the form builder to create visually rich and engaging questions. Drag and drop features make it easy to add and personalize content such as different question choices, images, backgrounds, and more. When complete, share using your unique URL or embed your Typeform using provided HTML. Go to the Help Center and under Dashboard, read more about your options for sharing your Typeform. Choose options for receiving and tracking visits to your form in your configuration settings.
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tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (177), polls and surveys (54), quizzes (102)

In the Classroom

This free tool is a great way to identify a value or rating of various items. Use this in science class to poll students on various types of renewable and nonrenewable energies as cheap/expensive and clean/dirty for the environment. Poll students on types of cars, rating the cost and gas mileage. Follow up with research into the various makes and models. Poll about famous presidents and various influences on the economy and society. Compare characters in various novels in measures of motivation and other characteristics. In younger grades, gather data about students favorite animals and why (such as fluffy/ferocious) or favorite colors and mood. Learn more about your students through polling of various social and cultural topics such as fashion, movies, and songs. Use this to identify misconceptions and resistance to various subject areas. Identify foods and feelings for each specific kind of food in Family and Consumer Science or attitudes towards various sports. Conduct specific polls for Introduction to Psychology or Sociology about various topics and reactions to the topics. Use to poll students on project ideas or to determine reactions to current events. Older students may want to include polls on their student blogs or wiki pages to increase involvement or create polls to use at the start of project presentations. Use polls to generate data for math class (graphing), during elections, or for critical thinking activities dealing with the interpretation of statistics. Use "real" data to engage students in issues that matter to them. For Professional development, rate different technology tools for ease of use/difficulty and high/low value for instruction. Place a poll on your teacher web page as a homework inspiration or to increase parent involvement. Gifted students would love this tool to dig deeply into the multiple facets of issues they worry about.

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JFK Assassination Timeline - Washington Post

Grades
7 to 12
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The Washington Post offers an interesting timeline detailing events of the day of JFK's assassination as well as the effect on how the Secret Service protects the president. Scroll...more
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The Washington Post offers an interesting timeline detailing events of the day of JFK's assassination as well as the effect on how the Secret Service protects the president. Scroll through the page to view the story from the president's arrival through the time Oswald flees the scene. Along the way listen to short audio clips from a former director of the Secret Service with how each event impacts changes to the security of the president.
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tag(s): kennedy (25), presidents (121)

In the Classroom

This site is ideal for an interactive whiteboard or projector. Open the site and view together as a class during a study of the presidents or elections. Use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram, reviewed here, to compare and contrast presidential security for JFK to today's president. Have students use Fakebook, reviewed here. Have them create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook from the perspective of John Kennedy, Lee Harvey Oswald, or a Secret Service agent documenting the day's events.

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Ducksters - Technological Solutions, Inc. (TSI)

Grades
2 to 8
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Ducksters is a safe, extensive, educational portal for kids. Find a wide choice of content such as interactives, sports, movies, and music. Begin by choosing a category to explore choices....more
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Ducksters is a safe, extensive, educational portal for kids. Find a wide choice of content such as interactives, sports, movies, and music. Begin by choosing a category to explore choices. The study category includes extensive information such as world history, many biographies, science explanations, and information on all continents and many countries. Interactive subjects include math times tables, checkers, and guess the country. There is a TON here to explore.
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tag(s): addition (223), african american (110), american revolution (86), animal homes (57), animals (308), artists (78), biographies (91), china (63), civil rights (121), civil war (143), cold war (30), continents (49), countries (80), data (158), division (159), egypt (70), elements (36), energy (207), environment (322), explorers (64), fractions (225), friction (14), geometric shapes (172), greece (27), habitats (90), human body (132), inventors and inventions (93), keyboarding (38), mean (26), median (23), mode (16), multiplication (210), planets (128), presidents (121), puzzles (203), recycling (58), renaissance (31), rome (26), solar system (119), sound (103), sports (97), subtraction (184), sun (70), world war 1 (56), world war 2 (142)

In the Classroom

This site is a perfect addition for use with a biography unit. Explore and share information categorized by topics such as Civil Rights, the Cold War, and Ancient Greece. Have students use Fakebook, reviewed here, to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about a president, famous scientist, or nearly any other real or fictitious person. Be sure to create a link to the site on your class webpage or newsletter for students to explore at home. Create a link on classroom computers for students to use the interactives during center time.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

Comments

Very safe and reliable. Everyone else is my school thinks ducksters is stupid but I love ducksters. Ry, CA, Grades: 6 - 12

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Our Nation's Leaders - Minnesota State University

Grades
3 to 12
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Learn about the first 43 Presidents at this interactive site. Read a brief portrait of each with a short narrative about his Presidency and accomplishments. A picture is also included...more
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Learn about the first 43 Presidents at this interactive site. Read a brief portrait of each with a short narrative about his Presidency and accomplishments. A picture is also included with each president. Unfortunately, it does not yet include President Obama and beyond.

tag(s): presidents (121)

In the Classroom

Use this site to introduce a specific president. Share this site on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Use this tool for research projects. There are several short paragraphs devoted to each President, and they would be perfect to teach how to take notes or summary writing. Have your class write a proposed piece about the current President and have the class vote on the best one.
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Learn the Address - Ken Burns

Grades
3 to 12
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This amazing yet simple site devotes itself to the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address. It encourages all Americans to video record themselves reading or reciting the speech....more
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This amazing yet simple site devotes itself to the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address. It encourages all Americans to video record themselves reading or reciting the speech. Scroll through to view the many videos already uploaded by presidents, journalists, actors, and everyday people. Share your recording using the simple steps provided on the site to become involved in this piece of history. If your district blocks YouTube, the videos may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): civil war (143), gettysburg address (18), lincoln (86), slavery (68)

In the Classroom

View a different video daily as part of your class warm up activities. Start with the Old Sturbridge Village to convey the setting and set the tone. Record your class reciting the Gettysburg Address and upload to the site. Encourage others to share their video. Make this part of a class community service project, encourage students to find community members to record a video or go to nursing homes and hospitals to get recordings from patients. While learning the Gettysburg Address have students create a word cloud of the important terms they learn from this site using a tool such as Wordle, reviewed here, Tagxedo, reviewed here, or WordItOut, reviewed here.

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Magna Carta 800th Anniversary - Magna Carta 2015 Committee

Grades
8 to 12
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2015 marked the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, one of the founding documents of modern democratic society. In recognition of this anniversary this committee collected a number of...more
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2015 marked the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, one of the founding documents of modern democratic society. In recognition of this anniversary this committee collected a number of resources for celebrating and understanding its significance to history. An interactive timeline highlights events prior to and following the signing of Magna Carta. Essays discuss Magna Carta's impact on modern democracy. An interactive map places events in geographic contexts. And perhaps you're planning a trip to the UK for the celebrations? Find visitors' resources and a calendar of commemorative events. Check out the resources under Schools, including biographies of those involved (including a whole section on women) in the development of the document. There are lesson plans aligned with the UK's school system, and a quick Q&A overview of the importance of Magna Carta today. Don't miss the YouTube video explaining the work of Britain's Parliament in just over 60 seconds. If your district blocks YouTube, then this video (and others) may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): branches of government (47), democracy (13), great britain (17)

In the Classroom

No study of modern democratic political systems is complete without an understanding of Magna Carta. On its anniversary, incorporate the interactive timeline into a discussion of the roots of the US Declaration of Independence or the post WW2 Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Compare and contrast the different ways the principles that underpin Magna Carta have been transformed into democratically elected governments across the world.
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Sixteen Months to Sumter - American Historical Association

Grades
8 to 12
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Advanced study of history requires increased attention to primary sources. Collected here are over 1,000 newspaper editorials written in the 16 months leading up to the start of the...more
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Advanced study of history requires increased attention to primary sources. Collected here are over 1,000 newspaper editorials written in the 16 months leading up to the start of the US Civil War. Along with a useful timeline of events during the same period, the site offers search either by the location of the publication or by the name of the publication. Editorials come from newspapers across the US, not just from those in states most often associated with the Civil War. The opinion expressed may offer a fresh perspective on what people were thinking just prior to the firing on Ft. Sumter. For example, we might view Abraham Lincoln as one of the greatest of American Presidents, but an editorial from the Harrisburg, Pennsylvania Daily Patriot and Union concludes with the words, "We confess we shudder as we contemplate the future in the person of this weak and ignorant man." (February 21, 1861).

tag(s): civil war (143), newspapers (95), primary sources (92)

In the Classroom

This is a wonderful resource for adding primary source material to a study of the US Civil War. It is particularly useful for advanced students, or those doing research. Consider choosing a newspaper that is located near you, if possible, and introduce students to a perspective that's close to home. Or choose editorials from two newspapers--one from the North and one from the South--written at the same time and contrast the perspectives expressed. Compare and contrast using an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here).

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Remember Pearl Harbor - New York Times: The Learning Network

Grades
6 to 12
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Remember Pearl Harbor is a lesson plan for teaching about Pearl Harbor using historic articles and social media. The complete lesson includes many ideas for deep student learning such...more
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Remember Pearl Harbor is a lesson plan for teaching about Pearl Harbor using historic articles and social media. The complete lesson includes many ideas for deep student learning such as creating a gallery walk, a Twitter project, and a historic headlines project. Click on highlighted links to get access to all resources included on the site including Common Core Standards. If your district blocks YouTube, some links may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid reviewed here to download the videos from YouTube.
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tag(s): japan (60), pearl harbor (12), roosevelt (16), world war 2 (142)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the free lesson plan for use in your World War II unit or Pearl Harbor lesson. Use this site to differentiate activities for students. Be sure to "mine" the links within the site for additional resources to add to your current lesson plans. Have students create a simple infographic about Pearl Harbor using Easel.ly, reviewed here or Venngage reviewed here. Have students or groups collect ideas and findings about the Day That Will Live in Infamy using Padlet, reviewed here. The Padlet application creates free online bulletin boards.
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