Stanford History Education Group
Faculty and staff from Stanford History Education Group have created a comprehensive website that includes free lesson plans and assessments to develop students’ critical thinking skills with social studies content, including U.S. History. The lessons are appropriate for GED, Pre-GED, Adult Diploma, and Advanced ESL classrooms. However, many of the activities can be adapted and modified for other levels. Major sections of the website include:
- Reading Like a Historian lesson plans give students the opportunity to answer an historical question while reviewing excerpts of primary documents and completing graphic organizers. The primary excerpts are designed for students with varied reading abilities, and the inquiry-based lessons cover all periods of U.S. History and selected timeframes of World History.
- Beyond the Bubble offers assessments designed to measure students’ historical thinking skills; topics range from “The Declaration of Independence” to “Native American Rights.” Also included are annotated sample student responses and videos on how to effectively use these assessments in the classroom.
- Civic Online Reasoning contains downloadable assessments and computer tasks that ask students to judge the credibility and evaluate types of online content such as “Claims on YouTube,” “News on Facebook,” and “Claims on Social Media.”