Monday, January 7, 2013

Primary vs. Secondary Source Museum Hunt

As we begin to move into our exploration unit, we are first looking at primary and secondary sources to make sure we have a good handle on what falls into what category.  Most of the students were "kind of" familiar with these source types, so that helped to have a little background knowledge when we delved into exploring them further.  Since these are such important concepts in social studies--and other content areas too!--it is really important that students know what each is and can categorize different artifacts as either a primary or secondary source.

After going over the basics, and watching a really easy-to-understand video (see above) on these concepts, we transformed our classroom into a museum.  Students had to go around to the different "exhibits" and categorize the artifacts as either a primary or secondary source.

However, students didn't just have to label them as primary or secondary, but instead also give a rationale as to why they categorized that artifact in that way.  Students really seemed to immerse themselves into this hunt--really going back and forth with why an artifact could be a primary source, or why it could be a secondary sources.

There were 12 artifacts/exhibits in total; and all were things that are in our classroom everyday.  It was great that students got to take "another look" at some of the things that they see everyday in our classroom.  It was neat to hear students say, "Wow, I can't believe we have so many primary sources in our classroom!"  All in all this was a successful activity that I think really made primary and secondary source categorization stick.  Check out all of our different artifacts below that the students had to categorize.

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