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History Labs

Teachers in Baltimore County Public Schools and the Howard County Public School System are participating in "History Labs," a new instructional project, funded by the United States Department of Education's Teaching American History Grant Program. Through History Labs, teachers engage their students in classroom learning experiences on a range of historical topics through the process of historical inquiry.

The History Labs developed by participant teachers will include all necessary information and tools for implementation, including the central questions, source materials, and step-by-step procedures for teaching and assessing student learning.

Each History Lab is based on an overarching question that guides the instruction and study of the topic. Through critical analysis and interpretation of evidence, students learn the content and develop historical thinking skills.

During the History Lab, students discuss the lead question and determine the information needed to formulate a response. Source materials are analyzed for authorship and purpose, significance, context and subtext, and multiple or conflicting perspectives.
Students then synthesize this information to construct evidence-based responses to the overarching question. History Labs can be taught in parts or in their entirety, and can be adjusted for different knowledge and ability levels. The student work products take the form of written narratives, oral presentations and debates, or multi-media projects.

The first of these teacher-created History Labs are available at Check back as more History Labs are added.

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