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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George Washington’s Printed Draft of the Constitution and Mike Wilkins’s [em]Preamble[/em] (Teaching with Documents)


By Lee Ann Potter and Elizabeth K. Eder
A work of modern art humorously highlights the 52 words of the Preamble to the Constitution. A historical document shows, however, that these well known words underwent many changes before reaching their final form.

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The “Day in the Life of a Teenage Hobo” Project


--Justin Reich and Thomas Daccord
(Subtitled: "Integrating Technology with Shneiderman’s Collect-Relate-Create-Donate Framework"). In this multiple day investigation of teenage homelessness during the Great Depression, students use a range of technologies—search engines, blogs, and podcasting tools—to investigate the political, economic, and social history of the time.

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The Crash of 2008: Causes and Fed Response


By James D. Gwartney and Joseph Connors
The current economic crisis is primarily a story about unintended consequences and what happens when the incentive structure is damaged by unsound institutions and policies.

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Keynesian, Monetarist and Supply-Side Policies: An Old Debate Gets New Life


By M. Scott Niederjohn and William C. Wood
Keynesian fiscal policy—out of fashion with economists and policymakers for decades—has enjoyed a revival under President Obama’s new economic policy team, but competing approaches also have their advocates.

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Keynesian, Monetarist and Supply-Side Policies: An Old Debate Gets New Life


By M. Scott Niederjohn and William C. Wood
Keynesian fiscal policy—out of fashion with economists and policymakers for decades—has enjoyed a revival under President Obama’s new economic policy team, but competing approaches also have their advocates.

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Child’s Letter to President John F. Kennedy about Physical Fitness (Teaching with Documents)


By Missy McNatt
The featured letter from a nine-year-old boy to JFK will highlight the need to promote physical fitness in our schools, and can ignite class discussions of issues such as federalism, Title IX, and the overall health of Americans.

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Abraham Lincoln: American Lawyer-President (Looking at the Law)


By Brian Dirck
Teaching Activity by Tiffany Willey
The same characteristics that made Lincoln a tenacious lawyer also made him a formidable president.

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The Civil War Battle That Helped Create a State


By Kay A. Chick
What makes an event worthy of the history textbooks? In this lesson, students study a little-known Civil War battle to broaden their understanding of historical significance.

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The Keys to the White House: Prediction for 2008


By Allan Lichtman
Students will comprehend the many factors that influence an election when they analyze why this successful prediction system forecasts a popular vote victory for the Democrats in 2008.

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“Summer Schedule” and “The Fishin’ Season”: Cartoons by Clifford Berryman (Teaching with Documents)


By Christine Blackerby
The two featured political cartoons will stir classroom debate on how presidential election campaigns are planned.

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