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ERIC Number: EJ994109
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Aug
Pages: 22
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0018-2745
Using Core Historical Thinking Concepts in an Elementary History Methods Course
Martin, Daisy
History Teacher, v45 n4 p581-602 Aug 2012
In an examination of how content knowledge influenced her initial third grade social studies teaching experiences, Suzanne Wilson found that it, among other things, helped her "to hear what students say" and in her students' comments were "often...the seeds of complex and sophisticated historical ideas." She also found content knowledge to be critical in engaging her students in "genuine social science and historical problems." But content knowledge, by itself, was insufficient; knowledge of other domains like curriculum and how students learn were also necessary. In other words, Wilson found content knowledge and pedagogical content knowledge necessary to effectively engage and challenge her students in learning history and social studies. Both of these knowledge domains include an understanding not only of the products of the historical discipline, but also of its processes--an understanding of what many call "historical thinking." If preparing teachers to teach for historical thinking is wise practice, as argued in the previous essays of this edition of "The History Teacher," then this cannot be an approach only for secondary teacher education. It is also necessary to involve teacher educators preparing multiple-subjects candidates--the future elementary teaching force. In this article, the author reports on her first experiences with preparing preservice candidates to teach elementary students both disciplinary processes of history and the products of those processes. She first describes contexts for her course and how they shaped her instructional goals. She then describes some of her instruction and curriculum focused on these goals. She explains four key ways she conceptualized aspects of historical thinking (multiple stories, historical context, fact versus fiction, and the claim-evidence connection) and argues for the necessity of such framing. These concepts fulfill a variety of purposes in encouraging and allowing candidates to teach for historical thinking, including illuminating discipline-specific literacy practices. Finally, she discusses some student work in relation to her approach. (Contains 50 notes.)
Society for History Education. California State University, Long Beach, 1250 Bellflower Boulevard, Long Beach, CA 90840-1601. Tel: 562-985-2573; Fax: 562-985-5431; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 3
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California