Facilitating Students’ Historical Scrutiny of Credibility within Slave Narratives

John H. Bickford III, Cynthia W. Rich

Abstract


History education researchers encourage teachers to intentionally integrate content, methods, and assessment in discipline-specific and age-appropriate ways.  State and national initiatives prescribe such integration across curricula and within all areas of the social studies from early elementary through high school.  The stipulation, however, does not provide a map for interested yet overwhelmed educators.  This is especially true for elementary and middle level teachers as the majority of historical thinking research and methodological guides targets older students.  To address this concern, we propose teachers fuse the content, methods, and assessment with specific historical thinking skills, or heuristics.  We model our theoretical approach with concrete examples.  We target middle level educators in an effort to facilitate historical thinking for this oft-neglected age group.

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