Classroom Ready Activities 

PA Battle Cry of Christmas

Christmas Truce of 1914 primary source set focused on the guiding historical question: "How did the Christmas Truce of 1914 come about and what factors enabled its occurrence?"


PA Civil Rights



Civil Liberties vs. National Security: WWII Japanese Internment as a Case Study using SCIM-C and Library of Congress Primary Sources WebQuest essential question is: "What is the reasonable balance between a country's need for security in times of political crisis/war and the civil liberties of its citizens?"



PA Dorothea Dix




Dorothea Lynde Dix and the Asylum Movement primary source set focused on the guiding historical question: "Did Dorothea Dix impact the reform of mental institutions/prisons and treatment of mental patients/convicts during the 19th century and how did she do so? Was she effective in making a change?"






Drawn to America a collaboration of OASIS Pittsburgh and the Library of Congress TPS program at Waynesburg University, combines creative writing with oral history in the documenting of these American immigrant stories. Four members of OASIS Pittsburgh wrote their family stories for an Ellis Island Statue of Liberty Foundation project. These stories were then enriched by scanned family photographs and images from the digital archives at the Library of Congress.

PA Drawn To America


Listen to the stories written by second and third generation immigrants telling why their parents and grandparents came to America and what challenges they faced on the journey and in the new world. You will see more similarities than differences in how a Lithuanian-American, a Polish American, a Ukrainian-American and a Canadian-American all became part of the Immigrant American Experience.



Family Artifacts lesson plan for 11th grade Language Arts, resources available in the Prairie Settlement: Nebraska Photographs and Family Letters, 1862-1912 online collection.

From German to Panem--It's Time to Prove Your Loyalty. Kill or Be Killed a WebQuest for 8th grade and beyond. 

American progress. 09855v


The Growing Nation lesson plan for 11th grade American History.








India- Burma- China Campaign of World War II thematic primary source set. Essential question: What was the USA's purpose or the India- Burma- China Campaign and why was it kept secret?

PA Lay of the Land 4a24765r


The Lay of the Land lesson plan was developed for sixth graders, students analyze historical and present-day images and maps of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Visual analysis and higher-order thinking skills are developed as students investigate how natural and man-made influences impact the development of industry in southwestern Pennsylvania.



Manchester Academic Charter School Student Projects

manchester students

Poetry and Art of Liverpool Street Landmarks is a collection of sketches and poems by Manchester Academic Charter School students. During this neighborhood walking tour of the historic Manchester neighborhood in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, one hundred elementary school students examined architectural details of landmark buildings that were built in the 1870s. Back in their classroom they wrote poetry and drew charcoal sketches from photographs of those same buildings. This project was sponsored by the Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation. Funding was provided by the Alfred M. Oppenheimer Memorial Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation.

manchester students 1909

Growing Up Manchester is an oral history project which brought 7th and 8th grade students from the Manchester Academic Charter School and senior residents of their neighborhood together. In the interviews, students learned about the economic, political and social changes that occurred in this urban community over the past 75 years. Short documentary videos were made using local and national primary source documents archived at Historic Pittsburgh, hosted by the University of Pittsburgh's Digital Research Library, and the Library of Congress.

picturing women

By utilizing primary sources the Picturing Women: Gender, Images, and Representation in Teaching History with Primary Sources lesson plan helps students examine stereotypes of African Americans with a focus on the portrayal of women to determine how they connect the initial appearance of the prints and the intent of the message of the print after further study of the primary sources. The students will compare images of African American women to images of women portrayed as "Mammies" during the antebellum and post-Civil War periods to understand the lives of women in those time periods.

Political Cartoons & the American Revolution professional development activity developed by Sarah Thayer participant of TPS:BASICS Fall 2012

Social History Quilt

This publication Social History of the United States: Melting Pot or Salad Bowl?, is meant to serve as a case study—a sampling of the ways pre-service teachers use primary source materials in developing learning activities for the classroom. It is hoped that a thorough analysis of these lessons will provide the reader with examples that lead to further discussion about the various ways primary source materials can be integrated effectively toward the improvement of education in K-12 classrooms.

Secondary social studies pre-service educators investigated the struggles America has encountered throughout the nation's history in striving for racial, ethnic, gender, and social equality. Each pre-service educator used this theme as underpinning for the development of a learning unit focused on a given time period in American history.

Timeless Type: Exploring Typography in Early American Printing a WebQuest for post-secondary digital design fundamentals.

Turning S.T.E.M. into S.T.E.A.M. an interdisciplinary WebQuest for grades 9-12.

Content created and featured in partnership with the TPS program does not indicate an endorsement by the Library of Congress. Website Images Bibliographic Information