Easy Activities to Get Started with Primary Sources - Plus a Freebie!

Primary sources are an amazing way to bring history into your classroom and create opportunities for critical thinking and rich discussion among your students. At the same time, it can be daunting to use primary sources with elementary students if you haven't tried it before. Here are a few easy activities you can try to bring primary sources into your classroom today.
Start using primary sources in your classroom today with these easy yet effective activities!

Why Writing Must Be Part of Your Daily Routine

Writing has a strong connection to reading growth and achievement. Find out why in this post by Comprehension Connection on Virginia is for Teachers.

If your day is busy, and you're pinched for time, what do you eliminate from the schedule? Do you snip a few minutes from each lesson? Maybe you divide a lesson across two days? Perhaps you remove a lesson from the list? Whatever you do, do not short change writing, and here's why...

Let them TALK! Placing Great Value in Student Conversation

Students are going to talk...so use it to your advantage. If you let them talk constructively, everyone benefits.
I’m a talker!  Always have been, always will be.  My mother used to start parent conferences with, “I know Cathy talks too much, what else can you tell me?”  My very favorite high school English teacher used me in a vocabulary example, “Cathy is loquacious.” Yep, it means talkative. 

Virginia Studies SOL Review and a FREEBIE

Would you like some resources to teach and/or review your Virginia Studies content? Then this post if for you! I'm Heather from Beg, Borrow, and Teach!, and I'm sharing my favorite resources for the following: SOL review, the Civil War, the American Revolution, and a FREEBIE that focuses on abolitionists and the formation of West Virginia.

Finding Primary Sources to Teach Virginia Studies

Resources and tips for locating and selecting primary sources to teach Virginia Studies

Are you interested in using primary sources with your students, but aren't sure where to start? I know it can be a little overwhelming and time-consuming to find what you need, so I've compiled a list of user-friendly places to look for primary sources related to the Virginia Studies curriculum. I've also included some suggestions for how to select appropriate primary sources to use with your students. Hope this helps you to get started!

Using the Dictionary

Second graders begin to use the dictionary to learn how to use guide words. Gulp. Sigh. And alphabetize to the second and third letter. This is such a hard skill, especially since first graders are only expected to alphabetize to the first letter. So since I have now taught a combination first/second class for two years, I have been able to expose my first graders to more challenging content and get them ready for next year by doing more alphabetical order.

Winter Poetry and a FREEBIE

Want some ideas on how to keep the writing curriculum fresh, even on those long Winter days?  Then check out my Winter Poetry Unit and Winter Poetry Freebie: Haikus!  Poetry + Figurative Language = FUN during your writing block that will keep the creative juices flowing. 

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