Class 9: Digital History

The Kaiserpanorama is a form of stereoscopic entertainment medium - 19th century
The Kaiserpanorama is a form of stereoscopic entertainment medium – 19th century

Digital historians:

  • Find, decode and critically source information.
  • Responsibly curate and archive collections with available digital tools.
  • Collaborate and share their findings with the world.

This class leads off with a live demo of professional networking on Twitter.  Social studies teachers make frequent use of of the hashtag #sschat. Adding it to their tweet makes it searchable by others. On Mondays 4-5 PM (Pacific) many social studies teachers log into Twitter at the same time and post using #sschat. Chats are archived here.

 We’ll use the event to explore how to use Twitter to build a personal learning network (PLN). Students that have not already done so , will be asked to create Twitter accounts. More on Twitter hashtags here. Article on Twitter for teachers here.

Next I will give a demo of GapMinder – a web tool that provided easy access to and visualization of historic economic, social and demographic data. GapMinder for Teachers here.

Finally, students will work with NGram Viewer and NYTimes Chronicle – web tools that quantify and visualize word usage. More on using nGram viewer and NYTimes Chronicle 

As part of an in-class demo of the power of  word frequency research, students will share their results via a Twitter hashtag: #WordFreq   We did this activity in our fall ’14 class and used Storify to curate a social media stream and create a Storify archive of our research Need some Storify ideas? 4 Ways to Use Storify in the Classroom

Books Ngram Viewer and NY Times Chronicle have many interesting applications in the classroom. For example, they can both be used to introduce the research method – form a hypothesis, gather and analyze data, revise hypothesis (as needed), draw conclusions, assess research methods. Working in teams students can easily pose research questions, run the data, revise and assess their research strategy. Students can quickly make and test predictions. They can then present and defend their conclusions to other classroom groups. All skills called for by the new Common Core standards. Ideas for classroom use Books Ngram Viewer and NY Times Chronicle.

Assignments for class 11

  1. By 11/1 write a blog post responding to our exploration of digital history in today’s class.
    What’s your reaction to using tools like Twitter, Storify, GapMinder, Books Ngram Viewer or NY Times Chronicle? How can historians leverage new digital tools for research, instruction, or professional growth?  Or you might design a short lesson using one of these tools.
  2. Come to our class on 11/2 with an idea for a flipped lesson. That night we will meet in the Digital Lab to design a flipped lesson using either a QuickTime screencast Samples or TEDed lesson built from a YouTube video Sample. You will have class time on 11/2 to create your flipped lesson, but you should arrive with an idea.

Image credit: The Kaiserpanorama (or Kaiser-Panorama) is a form of stereoscopic entertainment medium used chiefly in the 19th and early 20th centuries, a precursor to film, invented by August Fuhrmann (1844 – 1925). It was patented by the inventor ca. 1890. There would be a number of viewing stations through which people would peer through a pair of lenses showing a number of rotating stereoscopic glass slides. By 1910 he is said to have controlled exhibitions in over 250 branches across Europe, and in the central archive have up to 100,000 slides stored.

Class 10: Hosting #sschat / Get Started with iBooks Author

page 288 of Baltimore and Ohio employees magazineWe’re very proud that our EdMethods class has been selected to host #sschat on the Twitters – Nov 3, 2014 4-5 PM (Pacific) That night is election eve ’14 and our topic will be very timely – “Teaching Politics, Controversy and Civic Engagement.” For more on our chat questions click here.

After the Twitter chat raps up, we’ll spend some time debriefing on the experience.

Class DBQ iBook
Next up, we’ll get started with our iBooks Author training. Over the next few weeks we will use our DBQ projects to create a collaborative iBook. As a group, the class will review each other’s work before inclusion in the iBook collection of DBQs. Each student (or team) will contribute one DBQ in the form of a book chapter. It will include the project reflection as a way of introducing the DBQ.

Technical aspects
The iBooks will be designed using iBooks Author in the Mac lab. Students will bring digital versions of their DBQs to the lab – including all image and sound files, text files, citations and URLs. Here’s a quick guide to managing your files to get ready for iBooks Author: Get Started with IBA

Note: YouTube videos will be added to the iBooks using ibooksgenerator. All you need to have is the URL of the video.

For more see:


Next week we will have a visitor from the Classroom Law Project who will share law-related educational resources and guide us through a mock trial activity.

  • We will argue the case of Vickers v Hearst (443kb PDF) so be sure to read the case in advance.
  • To “learn the rules” read this guide Mock Trial Rules of Evidence (185kb PDF).
  • If you have never participated in a mock trial you may wish to look at this material that explains the various roles of attorney and witness  The People v Carter (2.4mb PDF)

Image credit: page 288 of “Baltimore and Ohio Railroad employees magazine” (1912)

Identifier: baltimoreohioemp01balt
Title: Baltimore and Ohio employees magazine
Year: 1912 (1910s)

Class 5: Historical Thinking Part II / Twitter #sschat

Across the continentThis class leads off with a live demo of the #sschat on Twitter (Mondays 4-5 PM Pacific). Chats are archived here.

Will use the event to begin a discussion of using Twitter to build a personal learning network (PLN). Students that have not already done so , will be asked to create Twitter accounts. More on Twitter hashtags here.

Next, we will turn our attention back to our exploration of teaching strategies for developing historical thinking skills. We will deconstruct The Battle of the Little Bighorn Lesson Plan from the Stanford History Education Group’s Reading Like A Historian and how it’s designed to teaching skills in Sourcing, Contextualizing and Corroborating. Keeping with our “western theme” we will take some time to develop lesson ideas for using “Across the Continent” an 1868 Currier & Ives print drawn by Frances Flora Palmer. [Above]

Finally we will turn do some peer editing of our shared Google presentation of collecting student-designed mini-lesson based on the Beyond the Bubble assessment model. Assignment | Product

Assignment for Class 6 – Shared Google presentation should be done by bed time 9/24. Blog post due by next class.

  1. Take the peer feedback and do a final version of your mini-lesson.
  2. Write a brief reflection on the process – it could include your take on historic thinking, the specific lesson model borrowed from SHEG, working with a shared Google presentation, peer review process, etc.
  3. Take all the content of your lesson plus the reflection and post it to our blog as your second authored post.

Reading assignment: Snapshot of a modern learner in SmartBlog on Education

Image credit: “Across the Continent” 1868 Currier & Ives print drawn by Frances Flora Palmer  Newberry Library