ERIC Number: ED442739
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Jul
Reference Count: N/A
Using Primary Sources on the Internet To Teach and Learn History. ERIC Digest.
The Internet enables teachers to enhance the teaching and learning of history through quick and extensive access to primary sources. Introducing and using primary sources in the history classroom will almost certainly lead to active learning and development of critical thinking, reasoning, and problem solving. This Digest discusses: (1) types and uses of primary sources; (2) using the Internet to obtain primary sources; and (3) exemplary World Wide Web sites providing primary sources. Primary sources are not limited to printed documents such as letters, newspapers, diaries, and poems. Artifacts (art, pottery, articles of clothing, tools, and food), places (ecosystems, dwellings, and other buildings and structures), sounds (music, stories, and folklore), and images (paintings, photographs, and videos/movies) can also be considered primary sources. Introducing and using primary sources in the history classroom leads to active learning and to the development of critical thinking and enhancement of the learning process by allowing students to construct their own understandings of people, events, and ideas. Precautionary measures to maintain safe learning environments when using online primary sources are given. Examples of user friendly and efficient search engine Web sites also are given. A few of the primary source sites offered include the American Memory Historical Collections for the National Digital Library (maintained by the Library of Congress), the National Security Archive (founded in 1985 by a group of journalists and scholars that had obtained documentation from the U.S. government under the Freedom of Information Act), and the National Park Service (features over 2,300 National Historic Landmarks. Many other primary source Web sites are offered. (Contains 10 references.) (LB)
Descriptors: Active Learning, Elementary Secondary Education, History, History Instruction, Internet, Primary Sources, Social Studies, World Wide Web
ERIC Clearinghouse for Social Studies/Social Science Education, 2805 East Tenth Street, Suite 120, Bloomington, IN 47408; Tel: 800-266-3815.
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse for Social Studies/Social Science Education, Bloomington, IN.