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Teaching Resources

Decoding the Civil War (Huntington Libraries/NHPRC consortium)

The U.S. Civil War still captures, as does Abraham Lincoln’s presidency, the imagination and passion of young and old. While perpetually fascinating, with all we know and have learned, there is still much to discover with new materials, new stories. Decoding the Civil War is an online resource for multiple grade levels that invites students to examine actual telegram messages and place them in social and historical context.

Mindful Consumerism (Facing the Future)

The holidays are a good time to think about consumption, specifically, the impact that our own consumption has on the environment and our fellow humans. "Consumerism is related to consumption but it describes a particular worldview related to our consumption patterns. Everyone must consume resources like food and water in order to survive. Such resources are critical to human survival. However, we also consume resources for personal enjoyment, such as for entertainment and leisure, or maybe to treat yourself, or a friend with a gift.

Daniel Ellsberg: Danger of Nuclear War (NPR/Democracy Now)

On the closing day of the 97th NCSS Annual Conference, Daniel Ellsberg was slated to address the plenary gathering, but he was ill that day, and co-speaker Peter J. Kuznick adeptly filled the hour (as will be reported in the next TSSP newsletter). Ellsberg was soon back on his feet, giving a 59-minute radio interview, a few weeks later. Teachers who wonder what Ellsberg might have said could do worse than check out the podcast and

Free Geography Resources (ODT Maps)

Have you seen the "free stuff webpage" at ODT Maps? It offers . . .

Nine - free map postcards
Five - golden circles*
Four - NCGE books
Free - NCGE world-outline map masters (Major Countries, and World Outline)
Two - videos on YouTube
One - article The ODT USA Equal Area Map and one chapter from the book Seeing Through Maps
And a partridge in a pear tree!*

Check back every month to see new items posted regularly at, even after the winter holidays are over.

Diplomacy Simulations (U.S. Dept. of State)

The Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching Program team at the Institute of International Education announces a free teaching resource: the U.S. Diplomacy Center's Diplomacy Simulations Program, "designed to expose students to the world of foreign affairs and help them develop the 21st century skill set they will need to be competitive in today's global economy."

Lincoln's Papers Online (Library of Congress)

Abraham Lincoln’s papers from his time as a lawyer, congressman and the 16th president are now online in full color in a new presentation after a multi-year digitization effort at the Library of Congress. This collection includes Lincoln’s Inaugural Addresses, Draft of Emancipation Proclamation among more than 40,000 documents dating from 1774 through Lincoln’s presidency and beyond. There are materials from his campaigns, Lincoln’s first and second inaugural addresses and the earliest known copies of the Gettysburg Address.

The Pledge of Allegiance & Anthem: Protest, and Controversy (NCSS; National Constitution Center; First Amendment Center; Library of Congress; and more)

* The Pledge of Allegiance, its history, and the addition of the phrase "under God" can serve as a jumping off point into major themes of U.S. history and First Amendment freedoms. Here is a free article in Social Education, September 2013 by Eric C. Groce, Tina Heafner, and Elizabeth Bellows:

National History Day: Events and Free Teaching Resources

For thousands of students around the world, autumn marks the start of another chance to get excited about learning with the National History Day Contest. Students enter their projects in local level contests, with the top entries advancing to regional, state/affiliate, and finally, the National Contest in June 2018. Along the way, students compete for the gold medal in their category as well as honors, awards, and thousands of dollars in prizes and scholarships.

Hispanic Heritage Month (Library of Congress; NARA; NPS; et al.)

U.S. law (signed by Pres LBJ and then expanded by Reagan) designates September 15 to October 15 of each year as National Hispanic Heritage Month.
See the excellent -- with its vast collection of resources -- which is a collaboration of the Library of Congress and the National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, and U.S. National Archives and Records Administration.


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