At my incredible XQ high school we got to design a Passion class. I am new to Instagram so I conducted tons of research and created a presentation for my students! See below.
Instagram Masterclass by Jaime Caldwell
In this lesson students will evaluate why the time period under the Abbasid dynasty referred to as the Golden Age of Islam by developing a thesis and support their thesis by writing a historical essay with evidence. This is a great lesson to help teach historical thinking and historical writing while learning about a fascinating Civilization during the Middle Ages: The Abbasids!
Click the Image below to get the lesson!
Teaching "Global Convergence" in 7th Grade?
In this lesson students will deconstruct the advantages that the Spanish had over the Aztec Empire. In the early 1800-1900’s (Western) Historical scholarship focused on the “Civilized” nature of the Spanish and their moral greatness which made them “superior men” and thereby able to defeat the mighty Aztec empire. But, really the Spanish had many advantages, not because they were “superior” but, rather- just lucky. Students will practice analyzing sources, finding corroborating sources and writing a historical analysis answering the question: How were the Spanish conquistadors able to defeat the mighty Aztec Empire with only 600 men?
This is a great lesson to examine how much of history and culture is shaped by luck and circumstance. It challenges the assumption of "Western Superiority" and rather uncovers the advantages European powers had.
Click the Image Below to get the PDF
Instead of a "physical interactive notebook" my students have Online Interactive Notebooks. I call these notebooks "Hidden Histories" in which I focus on people who are marginalized or not mentioned in history. For my first digital notebook of the year I have students learn about the basics of History and provide them many prompts for reflection. Use this free resource to help your students start thinking about where history comes from.
How to implement the Digital Notebook?
If you have access to technology students can complete a little at a time (or make it an independent assignment). If students do not have access to the internet these documents can be printed out display a question or prompt on the screen and students can write responses on paper.
If you click the image below it will take you to an online google document. Make a copy of the document and feel free to modify for your class.
This would be great for 7th Grade Medieval World History when you examine South East Asia and the Middle East.
When I start the unit on Islamic Civilizations I always try to deconstruct student's misconceptions and stereotypes about Islam. I have students fill out an anticipation guide (see below) and then give them placards that will inform of truth. This activity also teaches them how to cite information and evidence and write accurate claims. Use the free resources below to help your students gain a truthful and accurate insight about Islam.
Click Below for three free resources.
(Above: Just an image with essential questions) Below are the resources
(Above: Click Image for Anticipatory Guide)
(Above: Click the image above for Evidence Placards)
(Above: Worksheet for students to use with placards)
Instead of using a "physical notebook" opt for a digital notebook. If you teach 7th Grade history, feel free to use this Digital Portfolio and modify for your class. I usually do one activity per day an an anticipatory set before I dive deeply into the topic. Click the images below for the free resources.
Online Interactive Worksheet for students
Students need to practice investigating historical questions and learn about the strengths and weaknesses of online sources. This quick lesson with help them do both! This would be great for 8th grade history when you examine the early Colonies, but it can be used in ELA class as well.
Pose the question: what happens at Thanksgiving? Discuss. Pose the question: "Did the 'real' thanksgiving actually happen?"
Assign the document (via google classroom or Canvas or share out on google documents. Have students make a copy of assignment). Students click the links to various articles online and investigate the strengths and weaknesses of each source as well as evidence if it actually took place or not.
Extension: Assign the SHEG assessment on the first thanksgiving for an additional sourcing assessment. Play the video before to scaffold the assignment or after for your advanced classes (3 minutes long).
Click the image below to get a free copy of the assignment.
Make History Relevant Using Current Events
Trying to make historical content relevant for teenagers is our constant challenge as history teachers. Using current events may help with this challenge. The goal is by showing students how history influences our world today may make them see the importance of learning history. Use this free worksheet (click image to download a pdf version) for students along side a current event article. I recommend using NEWSELA for news articles (Be mindful that Newsela now has a lot of content that are not news articles, rather summary readings).
Added: If you are looking for a GATE alternative suitable for all grade levels look at the image below and click the image to download a free pdf worksheet (Note: I have students write their answers on lined paper)
Suitable for grades 6-8
GATE Current Event Analysis
Free Website and Worksheet (7th Grade History)
Teaching about Ancient Rome? Check out some free resources I created for my Students. Click the images below and they will take you to an interactive website for students to read primary sources, look at images and watch interesting videos (tell them to wear earphones or watch as a class) and accompanying worksheet in which students complete in tandem with the website.
Student Objective: Students will analyze multiple secondary sources to determine how Rome was a site of Encounter and examine how all Romans lived.
Historical Thinking Skills: (1)Describe the importance of contributions from past civilizations and cultures
(2) Relate and connect the values, social customs and traditions of the past to the student’s personal experiences
Interactive Student Website
Student Worksheet (Click below for the PDF)
Engage the learner with entertaining and informative videos!
Need a short video to establish context? Use TED Ed videos. They make them for all different subject matters and all grade levels. They also have interactive lessons that accompany the Video. All subjects and all grade levels are located HERE or click the image below from the link. Thank you TED!