TeachersFirst's Resources for American Presidents

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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Presidents' Day Page - Sheila A. Simmons

Grades
1 to 5
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Here's a very simple pictorial introduction to the lives of Washington and Lincoln, created for California's SCORE program. Primary students will have no trouble navigating these pages...more
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Here's a very simple pictorial introduction to the lives of Washington and Lincoln, created for California's SCORE program. Primary students will have no trouble navigating these pages and reading the simple descriptions. This site offers a slideshow with some authentic pictures of both famous presidents. Includes links to literature, class activities, bibliography, and related information. The class activities are ready to go and easy to follow. Most include standards, and all but two of the outside links were working at the time of this review.

tag(s): lincoln (86), presidents (131), washington (36)

In the Classroom

This site is ideal for research projects or a quick President's day activity. Check out the class activities section for some "ready to go" lesson ideas (with standards). Share the slideshow on your interactive whiteboard or projector.

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50states.com

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4 to 8
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This site offers metalists (most of the content isn't theirs) for each state, including bios of presidents from that state, attractions, public records, and more. There's much more...more
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This site offers metalists (most of the content isn't theirs) for each state, including bios of presidents from that state, attractions, public records, and more. There's much more than history items at this site, which may or may not be an advantage.

tag(s): states (162)

In the Classroom

There are a lot of ads from this site, so if using be sure to forewarn students not to access any of the side links. Use this site if creating state profiles during an American History class. This activity works best if accompanied by a guided graphic organizer or worksheet - we recommend using Graphic Organizer Maker, (reviewed here).

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The Afghan Taliban - Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

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9 to 12
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A 1998 article from the Washington Report on Middle East affairs authored by a former professor at the University of Kabul. ...more
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A 1998 article from the Washington Report on Middle East affairs authored by a former professor at the University of Kabul.

tag(s): afghanistan (7), terrorism (49), terrorist (16)

In the Classroom

Although this is more than ten years out of date, there is a lot of reliable information here that can be used to establish a background for the current conflict in Afghanistan. Use this site as an activator for a unit on the modern conflict today. Have students read the article for a class discussion on it's accuracy and whether or not the events have played out as the author predicted. This would be useful in a Government or Cultural Geography classroom.

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Biographies of current and past Presidents and members of Congress

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1 to 12
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...more
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Presidential Biographies - IPL

Grades
4 to 12
3 Favorites 2  Comments
Though the title is probably misleading, this site's collection of information about the presidencies of our nation's leaders has plenty of facts, but little context. One of the more...more
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Though the title is probably misleading, this site's collection of information about the presidencies of our nation's leaders has plenty of facts, but little context. One of the more interesting features are the links to historical documents from different presidencies. This one's useful for very basic research, but it lacks the "who did what" aspects that can make history really interesting.

tag(s): presidents (131)

In the Classroom

Because this is a very organized presentation of the presidents, it would be extremely easy to compare presidents about very specific points. This would be useful in a class discussion of political party differences, campaign spending & finance, and legislation decisions. For comparison purposes, we recommend using an online Venn Diagram to be used on the interactive whiteboard or projector. Use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here).

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This would be good for students doing their own research. Dan, OR, Grades: 0 - 6
This would be great for students doing their own research. Dan, OR, Grades: 0 - 6

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Truman Presidential Library

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6 to 12
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The Truman Library site contains resources from the Truman administration, including photos, documents, and links to other resources dealing with the Truman presidency. ...more
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The Truman Library site contains resources from the Truman administration, including photos, documents, and links to other resources dealing with the Truman presidency.

tag(s): presidents (131)

In the Classroom

Within the "education" section of the site are several lesson plans, for both elementary and secondary teachers. Lessons aren't solely excluded to Truman, but ran the gamit for U.S. history or government. Be sure to save this one as a favorite to allow for easy retrieval later on.

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The Pentagon Papers Case - George Washington University

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9 to 12
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Remembered today primarily for its First Amendment implications, the Pentagon Papers case helped alter the relationship between America's press and president. Much of this extensive...more
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Remembered today primarily for its First Amendment implications, the Pentagon Papers case helped alter the relationship between America's press and president. Much of this extensive collection at George Washington University is beyond the scope of high school curriculum, but the contents provide ample material for a term paper or a lesson on the political events of the 60s and 70s.

tag(s): newspapers (94), vietnam (36)

In the Classroom

Use this site on a projector or interactive whiteboard to discuss and informally assess prior knowledge as you start your study of Watergate. The site has some excellent audio clips of the Watergate trial, in addition to comments from the editor of the New York Times. Use the clips to illustrate to students the immediate effects of the event. The clips are a bit long, so it is probably most beneficial to preview them before and time them to see what portions would be the most useful in your classroom.

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Watergate - The Washington Post - Washington Post

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9 to 12
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The Washington Post offers a 25-year retrospective from the newspaper that broke the story. The site includes archival materials, interviews with the principals, and links to other...more
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The Washington Post offers a 25-year retrospective from the newspaper that broke the story. The site includes archival materials, interviews with the principals, and links to other official and unofficial resources. No discussion of Watergate should omit the Post's involvement and perspective.

tag(s): presidents (131)

In the Classroom

Use portions of this site for a jigsaw activity, allowing students to teach each other about the different events in Watergate as well as the various perspectives. Put students into groups of 4, with each group focusing on a different portion on Watergate covered in the Post site. Have each group study their portion in depth, eventually creating a presentation that would allow them to teach the content to their peers. After students have prepared, split up the groups, creating at least 4 new groups, with every member representing a different perspective of coverage. Have the students teach their group members - making sure to be in chronological order. Activities like the Jigsaw model are a great way to both get students interested and allow for more autonomy. To finish it up, have the class take a quiz on the material - graded or not - to insure that students are accountable for actually teaching their peers something.

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Lesson Unit: Choices and Commitments - National Park Service

Grades
4 to 8
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The National Park Service created this extensive lesson unit to help students understand the Civil War from a soldier's perspective. The unit uses lots of primary sources, and provides...more
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The National Park Service created this extensive lesson unit to help students understand the Civil War from a soldier's perspective. The unit uses lots of primary sources, and provides an opportunity for a creative response to the lesson content.

tag(s): civil war (145), lincoln (86)

In the Classroom

There is enough background information that teachers have several different options for presenting the material. This unit could form the basis for several weeks' study of the Civil War.

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American Indians of the Pacific Northwest - University of Washington

Grades
6 to 12
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The University of Washington has created this site to document cultural and historic materials dealing with northwest Native peoples. Segmented by tribal groups, the collection includes...more
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The University of Washington has created this site to document cultural and historic materials dealing with northwest Native peoples. Segmented by tribal groups, the collection includes images and text, as well as search capabilities.

tag(s): native americans (78)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a reference point to search for primary source material concerning Native American tribes of the Northwest. These materials could easily supplement a unit on Native Americans, Westward Expansion, tensions between the US government and the various tribes, etc.

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The Renaissance

Grades
9 to 12
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This elegant site - part of a college-level world culture series - presents the Italian Renaissance and discusses the social, political, and economic trends which contributed to the...more
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This elegant site - part of a college-level world culture series - presents the Italian Renaissance and discusses the social, political, and economic trends which contributed to the flowering of renaissance art and culture. Excellent, dense content would be suitable for advanced high school research, or as background reading for teachers working with this subject. From Washington State University.

tag(s): renaissance (34)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a source for research projects! The information is a little text heavy, but it provides a lot of great information for students to search for a start to their thesis.

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Fog of War - Washington Post

Grades
6 to 12
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The Washington Post presents this extensive site which examines the conduct and consequences of the Gulf War in 1991. Complete with maps, damage assessment charts, and commentary by...more
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The Washington Post presents this extensive site which examines the conduct and consequences of the Gulf War in 1991. Complete with maps, damage assessment charts, and commentary by former commanders, the site chronicles the war's effect on the middle east while discussing the problems inherent in managing a limited conflict. Good starting point for a discussion of the interplay between military, political, and diplomatic interests in American foreign policy.

tag(s): middle east (30)

In the Classroom

Use this site as an extended learning center during a lesson(s) on the Gulf War. Because there is a lot of information on this site, we recommend creating a follow-along or guide to highlight for students what is the most important. For help creating easy sheets, we recommend using Graphic Organizer Maker, (reviewed here).

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Rome

Grades
9 to 12
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This site from Washington State University provides college-level depth on the evolution, flowering, and decline of the Roman empire. The treatment includes political, social, and military...more
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This site from Washington State University provides college-level depth on the evolution, flowering, and decline of the Roman empire. The treatment includes political, social, and military history in sufficient detail that teachers should be able to use this site as a resource for planning an entire unit on Roman history, even at the high school level. Serious students will find a rich resource of factual information.

tag(s): romans (35), rome (27)

In the Classroom

Include this link on your class website (or wiki) for students to practice both in and out of the classroom. The information is more encyclopedia-like, but can help fill in the holes that students may have about the textbook or lectures. Students can use the site as a reference or for review before assessments.

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FDR and the Supreme Court - National Archives

Grades
9 to 12
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Franklin Roosevelt's plan to pack the Supreme Court was a landmark test of the Constitution's separation of powers. This lesson plan from the Library of Congress explores the implications...more
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Franklin Roosevelt's plan to pack the Supreme Court was a landmark test of the Constitution's separation of powers. This lesson plan from the Library of Congress explores the implications of Roosevelt's plan and asks students to argue both sides of the question.

tag(s): roosevelt (16), supreme court (22)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the free lesson plan and classroom activities hosted on this website! US history and government teachers will appreciate this one - just make sure to save it as a favorite to allow for easy retrieval later on.

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Washington

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4 to 12
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The state's home page. ...more
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The state's home page.

tag(s): states (162), washington (36)

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The American Presidents

Grades
1 to 12
1 Favorites 0  Comments
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tag(s): biographies (87), presidents (131)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a point of reference for information about our Presidents. Students could use this site as a spring board for research projects, or historical heads. For historical heads, have students draw inside of a blank outline of a human face graphic representations of the president chosen for their project. Students should be able to describe and explain all representations, but it's a great way for them to organize their ideas and provide more memorable symbols for facts that they need to know.

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The Papers of George Washington - University of Virginia

Grades
8 to 12
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This site includes letters written both to and from George Washington. Important papers and letters are singled out, as well as an entire section of selected Revolutionary War documents....more
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This site includes letters written both to and from George Washington. Important papers and letters are singled out, as well as an entire section of selected Revolutionary War documents. This site would be of value to students serious about completing in depth research on the man or his major historical events in his life.

tag(s): presidents (131), primary sources (86), washington (36)

In the Classroom

In a discussion of the Revolutionary War or the Founding Fathers, use the pictures and images to supplement your lecture. Very rarely do students get to see time-period appropriate maps, and those provided on the site can be used to show and diagram major battles. The site also provides some excellent primary sources that complement such a unit. An excellent one to look at is his famed "Farewell Address," which can be used for both a revolutionary unit and any on American Diplomacy. Have students read the address as a class, following it with a discussion on how this speech impacted American foreign relations for the next 200 years. A great site for any resources on Washington!

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CollegeBound Math - Washington State University

Grades
11 to 12
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College-bound students can use this site from Washington State University to see if their math skills are up to par with the requirements of introductory college math. There are study...more
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College-bound students can use this site from Washington State University to see if their math skills are up to par with the requirements of introductory college math. There are study problems, a sample quiz, and other resources for those whose math needs a bit of a brush-up.

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Vive La France! - Washington Post

Grades
6 to 12
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Bring the world to your classroom. Experience the French culture with this fact-filled site. Find out what's in the news in France with a direct link to the Washington Post ...more
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Bring the world to your classroom. Experience the French culture with this fact-filled site. Find out what's in the news in France with a direct link to the Washington Post and AP newswires, get today's exchange rates for world currencies. You can even get today's weather forecast throughout France. With links to over 200 countries, this site lets you create a World's Fair in your classroom.

tag(s): france (40), french (88)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a starting point for any and all research projects based on France. Students can research current events, history, geography and economic statistics all from the homepage. Post this site on assignment worksheets requiring research as well as your teacher wiki or web page.

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GeologyLink

Grades
9 to 12
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This is a comprehensive resource for geology students and faculty, providing links to research data, lecture notes, teaching materials, and geology projects. Developed by the University...more
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This is a comprehensive resource for geology students and faculty, providing links to research data, lecture notes, teaching materials, and geology projects. Developed by the University of Washington with support from Worth Publishing. Lots of depth, but the site assumes a working knowledge of the field.

tag(s): geology (81), paleontology (41)

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