NCSS Online Teachers' Library

NCSS has selected a collection of classroom activities, teaching ideas, and articles from Social Education, Middle Level Learning, and Social Studies and the Young Learner. Browse the collection, or search by historical period and grade level using the search function below.
(Collections on other disciplines are under development.)

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Resolution and Letter to Congress from the Constitutional Convention (Teaching With Documents)


Lee Ann Potter
The U.S. Constitution is one of the most influential and most enduring constitutions in the world. Two little-known documents from the Constitutional Convention shed light on the Constitution's evolution.

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Picturing Women: Gender, Images, and Representation in Social Studies


--Christine Woyshner
Photographs and drawings of nineteenth-century dress reformers provide an excellent jumping off point for studying images of women in history.

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The Shadow War (Looking at the Law)


--Michelle Parrini and Charles F. Williams
A renewed U.S. government emphasis on espionage to guard against future terrorist attacks brings with it a host of legal challenges concerning the identification and exposure of covert agents and their legal rights.

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Connecting with Our Pioneer Past: Letters from the Homestead


—Gary Fertig
In the process of creating homestead dioramas and writing letters from the perspective of pioneers, students learn how geography and natural resources affect the economics and social relations of a community.

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Examining a Seven-Flag Chieu Hoi Pass: A Primary Document from the American War in Viet Nam


--Ted Engelmann
A close analysis of the Chieu Hoi pass, dropped over areas of Viet Nam to encourage enemy surrender, provides a unique approach to studying the Viet Nam war.

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Examining a Seven-Flag Chieu Hoi Pass: A Primary Document from the American War in Viet Nam


--Ted Engelmann
A close analysis of the Chieu Hoi pass, dropped over areas of Viet Nam to encourage enemy surrender, provides a unique approach to studying the Viet Nam war.

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Documents Related to the Flu Pandemic of 1918 (Teaching with Documents)


--Raphael Mazzone and Lee Ann Potter
As World War I neared its end, a worldwide epidemic claimed more victims than the war itself. The two featured documents recall the loss of life and havoc in the United States.

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Harvest Ceremony—Beyond the Thanksgiving Myth


--Johanna Gorelick and Genevieve Simermeyer/The Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of the American Indian
While the modern story of Thanksgiving describes the original feast as a friendly gathering of neighbors, in reality it had much more to do with political alliances, diplomacy, and an attempt at peaceful coexistence.

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Telling Tales:The Teaching of American History through Storytelling


—Tony R. Sanchez and Randy K. Mills
Teachers can relate the excitement, paradox, and importance of American history to students by conveying the challenges of life in the past with stories. [John Adams, in court, defends British soldiers after the Boston Massacre. Abigail Adams, speaking to her neighbor, defends the right of James Prince--an African American--to attend the local school.]

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The U.S. in Iraq: Confronting Policy Alternatives


--Choices for the 21st Century Education Program, Brown University
This lesson plan enables students to consider the principal alternatives facing U.S. policymakers in Iraq and to formulate their own points of view.

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