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Social Studies

Debbie Thomas
1900 W. Monroe
Springfield, IL 62704
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Inquiry Arc: Beginning with a Question

This short video shows the importance of beginning an inquiry with a question.

Reading Like a Historian

This site includes introductory lessons, U.S. History lessons, and World History lessons. They all include primary source documents and teach students how to investigate historical questions by employing reading strategies such as sourcing, contextualizing, corroborating, and close reading. This site also includes classroom posters to promote historical thinking and working with primary source documents. Teachers need to create a free account.

Reading Like a Historian Teaching Channel Series

This video series shows the practices of Reading Like a Historian in action.

Beyond the Bubble

Free formative assessments using primary source documents that engage students in higher-level thinking. The assessments are short and come with both rubrics and annotated student responses.

C3 Teachers

This site has an Inquiry Design Model (IDM) Generator for teachers to develop interactive inquiries. It also includes teacher-created inquiries for grades K - 12 for on a variety of social science-related topics.

Digital Public Library of America Primary Source Sets

These primary source sets are designed to help students develop critical thinking skills by exploring topics in history, literature, and culture through primary sources

Facing History and Ourselves

This site is dedicated to help students learn about hatred and bigotry so they can stop them from happening in the future. Includes teaching strategies and lessons for World and American history as well as goverment and civics.

Illinois Social Science in Action

All Illinois-created resources have been moved to the Illinois Scoial Science in Action webpage. The page also includes links to external resources that support the Illinois Social Science Standards.

Docs Teach

This site is a part of the National Archives and includes a wealth of documents and activities for American history instruction. Teachers need to create a free account.


Current events, text sets and famous speeches available at a variety of reading levels. Teachers need to create a free account.


An archive of primary source documents and videos for teaching, learning, research, reading and writing.