Teacher Professional Development

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Get a jump on the 2019-2020 school year and contest season by attending one (or more) of four teacher professional development sessions offered by National History Day® during the National Contest. Bring your own laptop and leave each session with strategies and materials to put into your classroom in September! Certificates of professional development will be offered. You can register for these programs when you register to attend the National Contest. The cost is $50 for one day of sessions or $90 for both days of sessions.


Monday, June 10, 2019
Tuesday, June 11, 2019
Monday, June 10, 2019

Annotating Like an Authority
9:00 - 11:30 a.m., Shoemaker 2102
An annotated bibliography is an intellectual roadmap to a topic, evidence of the writer’s authority. As students curate historical sources for their NHD projects, they naturally perform a series of judgment calls to select relevant documents, then curate essential ones for their bibliographies. While we teach them the historian’s thinking skills of sourcing, contextualizing and corroborating, their project annotations do not always reveal the depth of their thinking. During this workshop, we will deconstruct the process of crafting critical and descriptive annotations, then develop a plan for delivering targeted instruction in manageable chunks. By focusing on annotations, we can help students practice and polish the historical thinking skills that build their credibility with an audience.

Presenter: Debbie Abilock, co-founder of NoodleTools


The Five Steps of Historical Thinking
1:30 - 4:30 p.m., Shoemaker 2102
In this workshop for educators, Susan O’Donovan of the University of Memphis will help participants break historical thinking down into five discrete steps and show how those steps correspond to the different stages of the History Day process. We will start where all historians start their projects, with a question, and proceed through research, analysis, meaning making, and presentation. Along the way, we’ll discuss the obstacles our students might encounter, how to overcome them, and how, in the end, they can produce projects that are informed by top-quality historical thinking. Workshop materials will be freely available online for teachers to use with their students after the session.

Presenter: Dr. Susan O’Donovan, University of Memphis


Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Chronicling and Mapping the Women’s Suffrage Movement
9:15 – 10:15 a.m., Shoemaker 2102
Staff from the National Endowment for the Humanities will bring together digital mapping and their Chronicling America newspaper database as part of an inquiry into how and where the women’s suffrage movement was recorded in the United States. Participants will have the opportunity to construct compelling questions, work with primary sources, and design learning activities in preparation for next year’s 100th anniversary of the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment.

This is a free session available to all teachers.

Presenter: Mr. Jason Harshman and Ms. Julia Nguyen, National Endowment for the Humanities


Maya Lin: Artist, Architect, Innovator
10:30 – 11:30 a.m., Shoemaker 2102
The Vietnam Veterans Memorial changed the way our country honors and remembers those who served. During this session learn about Maya Lin, the creator of this memorial, and the work she has been doing ever since.

Presenter: Callie Wright, Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund


Teaching Breaking Barriers in History
1:30 – 3:30 p.m., Shoemaker 2102
Join Lynne O’Hara, Director of Programs, for a presentation of the 2020 Breaking Barriers in History theme. Following that, Lynne will use the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I to explore a variety of classroom strategies to engage students in active learning and historical thinking skills. She will demonstrate how these classroom strategies can improve the quality of NHD projects in your classroom. You will take away strategies and the materials to implement them in your classroom.

Presenter: Ms. Lynne O'Hara, Director of Programs, National History Day


Download the Schedule

This is the schedule for both days of teacher professional development.