Social Studies Critical Thinking Labs

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Social Studies Critical Thinking Labs. Primary/Secondary Source History Labs. Why use History Labs?. Research supports that hands on labs help students retain a higher Depth of Knowledge and labs also lend themselves to higher levels of Student Engagement Develops Historical Thinking Skills: - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


Social Studies Critical Thinking Labs

Primary/Secondary Source History LabsSocial Studies Critical Thinking LabsWhy use History Labs?Research supports that hands on labs help students retain a higher Depth of Knowledge and labs also lend themselves to higher levels of Student EngagementDevelops Historical Thinking Skills:Actively investigate the past as opposed to passively memorizingStrengthen Critical Reading and Writing SkillsImproves Student ability to handle and retain vital content informationStudents take control and ownership of content knowledge that fosters genuine and lasting interest in the Social StudiesWhat is a History Lab?A Research and Investigative learning experience that allows teachers the ability to cover a full range of historical thinking skills by taking students through processes similar to the methodology of historiansIn a History Lab, students:Seek to answer an open-ended overarching question that permits multiple possible answersAnalyze sources and apply information to develop answers to the overarching questionApply literacy skills in reading, evaluation and analysis of historical sources. (cross curriculum alignment)Thinking like a HistorianUsing primary/secondary sources engage social studies students to think like a historians by:Critically examining source materials for authorship and analysis of historical sources for authorship and purposeSignificant information (relevance to the lesson)Context and subtext (what is being said within the historical context)Multiple and conflicting perspectives (comparing points of view)Apply grade-level and ability-appropriate interpretive skillsAdjust or modify the overarching question itself, as necessaryDevelop, present, and refine their evidence-based answersChallenge assumptionsDeveloping Overarching QuestionsGood questions are central to the Historical Method and the History Lab modelwhen students are captivated by an overarching question, they will delve into their exploration of the historical topicAsk students to use questions posed by historians when considering the overarching questionsIs the topic open to debate over the role, agency, or effects of key events, factors or individualsHas new evidence emerged that challenges the traditional interpretation of the event or individualHave historians constructed divergent or conflicting interpretations from the same evidence? Have the interpretations of an event or individual changed significantly over time? (Historiography)

Lets Develop an Overarching Question

Building Background knowledgeBack Ground Knowledge helps place the historical sources used in the History Lab into their appropriate context.Through Contextualization, students unlock the claims made by authors and sources, and engage more deeply in understanding their purpose and perspective (both primary and secondary sources)Students need to know key concepts, personalities, and the chronology of their topic.Students can acquire background information through:Preliminary reading that have been discuss and debriefed prior to the history labVideo clipsShort, focused presentationsBrief topic lectures delivered by the teacherDO NOT GIVE AWAY THE FARM!!Conducting Source WorkHistorical Sources used in History Labs are not limited to Primary sources.Students should also learn to utilize secondary sources like history textbooks, essays, and historical debatesStudents use the same processes in examination of either primary or secondary sourcesAP level classes have been re-designed calling for a more even emphasis on primary to secondary sourcesExamples of Secondary sources:Conflict and Concession in American HistoryChanging Interpretations of American HistorySkills for Conducting source workSourcing the document: who wrote the document, when, and why? How might the authors purpose and perspective help us understand the information provided or viewpoint expressed in the documentCorroborating between sources- how does the document fit with the other sources? Identify sources that either support or challenge the claims made by the documentClose-reading the document- identify the arguments being presented and how the author makes their claimsGreat for differentiation with teacher prepared questions (ELLs)Scaffold questions to require multiple reading of the documentsQuestions gradually become more complex usually requiring re-examination of document

Skills for Conducting Source Work Cont.Contextualization- what else was going on when the document was created? How may that context have affected the information or argument presented in the source?Look at big picture (Significance on the history to this point)What is different from before (change over time)Identifying the subtext of the document- what event or viewpoint is the author responding to or debating with? How might these factors have shaped the authors purpose, and how is this intention reflected in the document itself?Continuity over time- what is the historical basis of the bias reflected.

Presenting and supporting InterpretationsAs students work through the History Lab they begin to develop, present, and revise their answers and interpretations of the SourcesIt is essential that students ground their answers to the overarching questions in evidence provided by the sources. Interpretations that emphasize some sources over othersCritically evaluate the sources to validate certain information or perspectiveUse the sources to construct an entirely new narrative of the subjectMirror the interpretative work of historiansPresenting and Supporting Interpretations Cont.Students can present and discuss their interpretations in various manners:Student Presentations (individual or group)- students discuss evidence that led them to develop their answersWhole-class discussion- teacher facilitates a discussion in which students must articulate their position and support their arguments with evidenceVisual arrangement of evidence- students asked to arrange evidence in sequence or patterns that help them develop their answer to the overarching questionContrasting Student interpretations with those of historians- Teacher presents historical thought on the subject and students compare their findings with those of experts.Altering the overarching questions- students know question the parameters of the question to bring in new debates, contrasting definitions, altering the emphasis on particular elements. Assessing Student learningAssessing students historical thinking is different than measuring their knowledge of historical contentHistory labs seek to assess the skill and complexity of the thinking and understanding behind student interpretations of evidence and responses to the overarching question through writing. (language, ELL, Critical Thinking)Forms of assessment to measure historical thinking in History Labs:Framed Quick Writes with guiding questions (best option for closed-readings)Two pieces of evidence that most complemented one another werebecauseThe most important/insightful piece of evidence wasbecauseArgumentative and Persuasive essays


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