The 2013 Teacher Workshop was a resounding success. We are preparing the schedule for our 2014 Teacher Workshop. We will convene July 15-18. Check back regularly
for announcements and information about future workshops. You can register
COMMON CORE ALERT!!!!
As you know, the adoption and implementation of the Common Core in Georgia schools
began in earnest this year. Ann Claunch and the National Curriculum Team
have prepared a Common Core/NHD Correlation worksheet. This tremendously
valuable resource can be found
The 2014 theme is 'Rights and Responsibilities in History'. Last used in
2003, this theme calls upon your students to consider the relationship between
right and responsibility in society. It can be a challenging certainly, but
it is also very rewarding. Check out the following resources:
2014 Theme Sheet
2014 Theme Book
Online Theme Discussion!!!
NHD's online discussion series continues. The questions and their answers are posted at the organization's site for your review. Stay tuned for announcements regarding future discussions.
Resources for Teachers
NHD in the classroom
- This is a section of the NHD website dedicated to teacher support. Start
The Georgia Historical Society has developed a series of resources that can be
very, very helpful. Thanks to GHS's Education Coordinator S. Sineath for
providing these materials!
GHS Education Brochure
Primary Sources in the Classroom
Where to Find Primary Sources
National History Day Resources at the Library of Congress -
'Some Models of Significance'
The National Archives and Records Administration The National Archives maintains
an online teacher clearinghouse of resources tied to National History Day and its
annual theme. You can check the page out
Chronicling America offers students
free access to nearly five million pages of hyper-local stories, advertisements,
and opinions published between 1836 and 1922 in 28 states (and growing) across
the country. In addition, EDSITEment, NEH's educational website for teachers, students,
and parents, will develop new educator and student resources to facilitate and
encourage use of the newspaper material." Visit
The Society of American Archivists has an online tool kit for NHD teachers and students that can be found at National History Day and Archivists Page .
The Thesis Statement
The heart and soul of any history day project is the thesis statement. It is the fundamental point you wish to make. Building them requires time and effort. When building one remember the general guidelines -
- Keep it short. Thesis statements should hover between 40-60 words. Too short, and there’s not enough information to explain the argument. Too long, and too many details have been included. Plus, if the students are creating an exhibit, and they only have 500 student-composed words to use, it doesn’t make sense to use up 100 of those words on just the thesis.
- Include all five W’s. The thesis is the first thing the viewer reads, so we should know immediately the who-what-where-when, and also the why-is-this-important.
- Include the theme words. Judges and teachers need to know how the topic relates to the theme, especially if the topic is obscure, extremely narrow, or isn’t immediately clear in its connection to the theme words.
- Leave facts out, put arguments in. We don’t need to see every detail of the topic in the thesis. Leave those for the project itself. What we need to see in the thesis is the student’s argument, or the point he/she is trying to make.
- Write, revise, research, revise. Students should not use the first draft of their thesis statement, but instead should revise based on feedback, go back to their research or conduct new research to make sure the thesis is accurate, and then revise once more. (http://education.mnhs.org/historyday/news/blog/short-sweet-and-point-thesis-statements)
The folks at Minnesota NHD have also created a handy video entitled "What's your Point?" This is the essence of a thesis statement. Check it out here!
Erin Burns, Reference Librarian at Penn State University Wilkes-Barre developed a presentation on thesis development in support of Pennsylvania NHD in 2012. Although the theme is 2012's and not 2014's it is very, very well done. You can have a look at Ms. Burns' presentation here. Please note that Ms. Burns' presentation will load as a pdf.
Your students can use an online thesis builder here. There is also the online 'Thesis Builder'
You can also ask your students to use this Thesis worksheet
The staff of Lewis Library have developed a Library Guide for LaGrange College Cornerstone students that introduces them to the basics of conducting research, proper citation and even avoiding plagiarism. NHD students might find this useful at various points in the process. Have a look here.
(Courtesy NHD Texas and NHD Washington) - Powerpoint presentation (loaded as a
pdf) that introduces and reviews the Website category.
Documentary - The guide to Documentary building can be found
. Notice the page includes the 2009 junior individual documentary winner.
Exhibits - The NHD Exhibit guide can be found
. Notice it includes a national winner sample.
Performance - The NHD Historical Performance guide can be found
. Here's an example of an
Historical Paper - The NHD Paper guide can be found
. It includes a link to a 2009 National winning paper.
The National office of NHD has created an
page that includes award winning entries from all categories. Have a look!
Annotated Bibliography - In some ways the most challenging (and arguably important)
component of an NHD project, preparing an effective bibliography can be daunting
for students. Check out the LibGuide prepared by the staff of Lewis Library
- It's great!
Here's a process paper and annotated bibliography guide prepared by the folk at Minnesota NHD