Module 3 - Select Content that Supports Objectives


Lesson Goals:

1. Identify specific and finite local content that can enhance or replace part of  your existing generic curriculum.

2. Learn to find the "hook".

3. Look at some examples of collection efforts and how they would be used


1. Read How To Write and Research a Local History Book This reflection will touch on the concepts we have discussed so far. There are wonderful and practical tips that will help you craft stories from your materials.

2. Watch the Module 3 Mini-Lecture

3. Now that you are acquiring all this content, you’ll want to use it in creative ways to engage your students. Here are a few ideas you might pull from.

Maps - there are a great when fun tool to get students thinking about directions and locations. You can do a lot with interactive maps by doing a simple interactive search for online interactive maps. In one project I actually 3D printed a watershed and painted the streams blue and the mountains and fields green. The children can have fun trying to point out where their house is based on a starting point for a frame of reference. You also use interactive online maps with hotspots that light up when a finger or computer hits them on the screen. Once a hotspot is engaged you can give additional information – you can use a Walking Tour Map as a starting point featuring the most prominent landmarks in the younger grades.

History in a Trunk - this is another fun way to get kindergartners some hands-on activities. Have a Local Historical Society or a collector bring in items that students can see and perhaps touch. Think of it as a Show and Tell! Some of the items in the truck might be obvious others might make for a good guessing game were children look at the pieces touch them and trying to figure out how they were used.

On-Screen Timelines or Cards - you can use drag and drop features in some programs to put events or sequences in order. This is great to show cycles in farming and food production, and their flow into commerce and trades.

Coloring Books or Pages are really a great start in getting students familiar with nearby sites. They are easy to make and you can use them year after year.

Matching Games to show Jobs, Trades, and Sites where jobs were performed. We have a grist mill in our town, a wagon works, and we used to have large chicken farms, a tannery (that provided leather to huge shoe manufacturers), and a creamery. Students can match an image of a person or product with the site that they were associated with.

Walking Tours in some areas Walking Tours are appropriate. Ask your local historical society what they have prepared and you may be pleasantly surprised at some of the stories associated with the sites.

3D Models or Building Blocks – in younger grades you can use blocks or Legos to “build” local landmarks. In older grades you can give students projects to 3D print a local site. I did one of a nearby school and I printed a few miniature copies. I made some smaller copies and people used them as Christmas ornaments. They are great for teaching math, angles, and measuring. You can also produce something tangible that students can hold. They can be painted later.

Crossword Puzzles – These are great as formative assessment. There are online programs that will create them Check out H5P widgets. They are built into some learning management programs or you copy code and embed it into a simple one-page website. Check out the tools they can provide. There is also another great app called Lumi that gives you the ability to easily leverage H5P capabilities. The link to the app is: Lumi It’s worth your time to check it out as there are dozens of interactive approaches to teach and assess.

Drama, Writing, Audio-Visual Production – There are so many ways that Local History can be used as a subject in an Art, Students can write brief plays or scripts, act them out, film them and edit them. In the youngest grades simple role-playing can be used. Here’s a project our local historian wrote called History in the Headstones

Site Tours – physical and virtual. Odds are your local historian or historical society has docents that can lead tours. Many have put recorded tours online (especially during COVID) to stay engaged with the public. Check out a video our group did: A Tour of Pitchers Mill.

Demonstrations – there are Blacksmith and Wooden Craftsman Guilds that will give demonstrations and lectures. Also, look for musical instrument makers. I know one gentleman who spent his lunch time driving to a local high school to help the "Shop" teacher teach students how to make a dulcimer. Over the years many dulcimers were made!

4. Fill out this Google form Module 3 Planning Form to answer the following questions:

Choose what lesson you will focus on

List your source documents

Find your Hooks and Facts

How you will present the lesson?

For my lesson- I will put together an electronic childrens book using the source material and facts I described in the Mini-Lecture video.

Click here to return to the Course Home Page

Click here to go to Module 4 - Content Synergy

References and Resources


Engelking, J. B. (2022, August 15). How to write and research a local history book. Writer's Digest. Retrieved December 7, 2022, from

Lisk, S. (2021, September 1). History in The Headstones. Nanticoke Valley Historical Society. Retrieved December 7, 2022, from

Kazcynski, L. (2018, May 0). A Tour of Pitcher's Mill. Nanticoke Valley Historical Society. Retrieved December 7, 2022, from

Lumi - Make education accessible, individual and exciting. Lumi. Retrieved December 7, 2022, from