Target Audience: Grades 6-12
Subjects/Skills: U.S. History, Civics, Historical Thinking Skills, Social Studies
The U.S. History Collection is a comprehensive set of media-rich educational resources that span the core topics and themes covered in most standard middle and high school U.S. History classes. It supports students in using historical thinking skills to construct meaning out of a past composed of multiple perspectives and stories.
The Collection’s main goals are to:
- Provide a single location for teachers to easily find and assign supplementary media for the entire scope and sequence of a U.S. history survey course. The Collection presents resources across 16 Eras of U.S. history. This structure reflects the most common scope and sequence in a chronological U.S. history survey course. In addition, resources are aligned with nine Historical Thinking Skills.
- Elevate the use of digital media to teach key topics and critical historical thinking skills in U.S. history. The media in the Collection has been curated to provide broad coverage of key events, people, and trends in U.S. History, while featuring multiple perspectives on the past and accurately reflecting the diversity of our historical experience.
- Facilitate inclusion into existing curriculum plans through teacher-friendly media and support materials that center students in the learning experience. The collection includes high-quality video from trusted public media programs such as AMERICAN EXPERIENCE, KEN BURNS, and AMERICAN MASTERS, interactive maps, timelines, and images, and self-paced interactive lessons. Support Materials are designed to help students think as a historian does—to discover, understand, and analyze what has happened in our past and how it affects our present-day lives.
- Increase student engagement with U.S. history through an emphasis on multiple perspectives, diversity, and inclusion so that historically marginalized students see themselves and their communities as integral to U.S. history.
- Respond to concerns about an informed citizenry and democratic institutions with resources that teach fundamental civic knowledge and the various ways young people throughout U.S. history have had civic impact.
As of April 2023, the U.S. History Collection has had over 600,000 users and 4.9 million pageviews since launch in August 2022! Moreover, an experimental study with over 1,200 students across 17 states found that students who used U.S. History Collection resources in their classes had significantly larger gains in content and historical thinking skills compared to students in similar classes who did not use the resources.. Read the full report here.
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