This blog is supervised by Peter Pappas with contributions from his undergraduate / graduate social studies methods class ~ ED 456/533E at the University of Portland’s School of Education.

We utilize a practical, hands-on, project-based approach to mastering the art and science of teaching secondary social studies. More here. Our course goals:

  1. Learn to think like a historian (or other social scientist).
  2. Become a skillful instructional designer.
  3. Develop skills for reflection, growth and professional networking.

Peter also teaches ED 424 ~ Computers and Educational Technology at UP. When not teaching, he can be found blogging at Copy / Paste or lurking on Twitter @edteck


Visit our edMethods Teacher’s Tool Kit for resources in historical thinking, primary source archives, edtech tools, Google tools, teaching strategies and more.



Header image: “Letters forming a teach word.” Photo by Wokandapix. Photo via Good Free Photos


Interpreting Hamilton: Replicating Lin Manuel Miranda’s Process of Creative Contemporary Interpretation of Primary Sources

Recently I learned that my 11th grade U.S. History students were extended the opportunity to attend the Broadway hit show “Hamilton,” a play that fuses contemporary hip hop with text based interpretations of historical figures.  This content is pure gold for history teachers that are hungry for ways to encourage student engagement. The program includes …

Exploring History Vol V: Six Document Based Lessons

We’re very pleased to share a new multi-touch iBook just published by our Social Studies Methods class. Exploring History: Vol V was our PBL capstone and is available free at iTunes in 51 countries around the world. It features these World and US History lessons: WWII Propaganda: Close Reading by Nancy Guidry The Limits of Leadership by Paxton …


Peter Pappas, the instructor,  is a University of Portland-based educator, writer and instructional designer exploring frontiers of teaching, jazz, yoga, Macs, film, great books, and garlic.


He also teaches an undergrad edtech course at UP, blogs at Copy / Paste and lurks on Twitter @edteck