Doing History: Investigating with Children in Elementary and Middle Schools

By Linda S. Levstik ; Keith C. Barton | Go to book overview

particular genre of historical writing, a self-assessment of a project, or an annotated bibliography of sources used in developing an interpretation. Jeanette, for instance, might require students to include an argument for the importance of one of the events on the time line they developed, while Ruby might ask her students to include their pictures of "for sure" facts about Johnny Appleseed.

Assessment portfolios also provide a good opportunity for teachers to conduct conferences with students about their work. Abby Mott, one of the teachers you will meet again later in this book, goes over the assessment portfolio with each child, discussing strengths and areas that need to be worked on in the coming weeks. Her students write up a set of goals for the upcoming grading period; the goals are then put in the learning portfolio as a way to organize for the next grading period. Besides the obvious advantage of emphasizing evaluation as an opportunity to plan for the future, these conferences allay student fears about report cards. By the time the report cards are distributed, there are rarely surprises. The students have a pretty clear understanding of their progress to that point and what they can do in the upcoming term. Abby has found that these conferences not only reassure students and promote more accurate self-assessment, they provide another opportunity for children to engage in historical talk--to return to ideas introduced earlier in a study and to discuss them one-on-one with an interested and informed adult.

When students help develop their own portfolios, they have a clearer understanding of their own performance.

Portfolios help structure student-teacher conferences.


CONCLUSIONS

Although each encounter with history may not transform every child in quite the ways James Baldwin suggests, cumulatively, in-depth historical study is more likely to encourage children to recognize themselves as historical participants rather than passive recipients of the past and unwitting victims of the present. As have others before them, they can change both the present and future. Simply telling students the same myths and stories over and over again will not have this effect. As Oscar Wilde once noted, "the one duty we owe to history is to rewrite it." In-depth study invites students to critique the myths, rewrite the stories, and tell multiple stories. It asks them, not just to memorize someone else's interpretations, but to develop their own; not just to accumulate information, but to ask themselves and each other, "So what?" What difference does this information make in the world? What does it say about what it means to be human in other times and places and right now, in our world? If students cannot enter imaginatively into the past, if they lack in-depth information about the world around them and its myriad possibilities, they are also less likely to understand the people next door.

Wilde ( 1982)

Baldwin ( 1988)

Degenhardt & McKay ( 1988)

History organized around imaginative entry into the past, in-depth studies of enduring themes and questions, focused on tasks that have relevance beyond the classroom and tied to students' prior knowledge may seem an overwhelming task. Certainly communities of historical inquiry don't just happen; they require careful planning on teachers' parts, time to build a foundation of mutual trust and respect, and freedom from some of the constraints of "coverage." The following chapters provide specific research-based suggestions involving a variety of classrooms in magnet schools, urban, suburban, and rural schools, schools where many children are bilingual (or becoming so)--where doing history is intellectually invigorating for both teachers and students.


CHILDREN'S AND ADOLESCENT LITERATURE

Historical Mystery, Myth, and Legend

Alderman C. L. Annie Oakley and the World of Her Time. Macmillan, 1979.

Barboza S. Door of No Return: The Legend of Goree Island. Cobblehill, 1994.

-28-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Doing History: Investigating with Children in Elementary and Middle Schools
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 218

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.