After my students investigate a Historical Question and annotate and analyze primary and secondary sources, I love to hold a Socratic Seminar (before they write an expository paragraph or essay). After we analyzed SHEG's Pocahontas Lesson Primary and Secondary Sources, I had students pick which role they wanted to be, gave them some time to examine the questions and take notes and then put them in a "fish bowl arena" (see images below) and let them start talking/ listening. Use the Presentation below (Click image for a copy of the presentation: The questions are specifically for the Pocahontas SHEG, but you can modify it to suit your class needs).
How I organized the desks...you can just do a circle of chairs. Just make sure there is an inner circle and outer circle. This was done with 40 students in a tiny classroom...so anything is possible!
Introducing Medieval West African Kingdoms Lesson
Student Objective: Students will identify which resources on the internet are credible and reliable sources to use to determine how Ghana and Mali became powerful empires during the 300-1600’s.
Historical Thinking Skill: Evaluate a primary source and secondary source document by contextualizing evidence.
There are four parts to this lesson.
1) (Establish Context) Reading and Text Dependent Questions
2) (Student Activity) Analysis of Text Dependent Sources and questions
3) (Reinforcing) A Checklist that will help them accomplish the student task (Links are about West Africa)
4) (Assessment) A short writing prompt answering the historical question based on the historical sources.
*Click the Two Images below for the free lesson (Both Documents are PDF Files).
The DBQ Project makes wonderful Document Based Questions to answer. I use their DBQs probably every unit. In the beginning and for my EL Students I create a pre-writing activity in which students have to match evidence with claims. I write down evidence from the DBQ and also write down various claims. Their task it to match the claim with the piece of evidence. I also sometimes provide the claims but they have to find the evidence, or vise versa, I will provide the evidence and they will have to make the claims. So many ways to teach the DBQ process.
I am passionate about history and am an education enthusiast.