Melissa Knowles

Introducing Primary and Secondary Sources in the Elementary Classroom

February 12, 2022 By Melissa Knowles

You are never too young to hold onto a piece of history and discover its connection to your life. Using primary and secondary sources gives students an opportunity to see, touch, and find clues about the history they are learning. These sources bring the past to life in a way that nothing else can.

Taking Informed Action with the C3 Framework

December 31, 2021 By Melissa Knowles

The C3 Framework is a framework for social studies education laid out by the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) that is inquiry based and aims to prepares students for college, careers, and civic life. The final dimension of the C3 Inquiry Arc allows students to take learning beyond the classroom, take informed action, and impact the world with their knowledge.

The Power of Professional Development for Educators

October 21, 2020 By Melissa Knowles

Teaching is as much a learning experience for educators as it is for students. The challenges of the pandemic have made people more aware of the need for educators to continue to grow and evolve to meet the needs of the changing world and its changing students.

The Teacher's Guide to Helping Students Analyze Political Cartoons

May 18, 2020 By Melissa Knowles

Cartoons can sometimes make a serious point. Benjamin Franklin’s 1754 “Join or Die” began the use of political cartoons. These visuals have been important in history by informing illiterate citizens and conveying a point of view on a political issue.  Cartoonists, with a single picture, could insult enemies, celebrate allies, change people’s minds on important issues, and be humorous enough to make an impact on the public’s view. Political cartoons bring humor and exaggeration to past and current issues. I tell my students political cartoons are pictures with a point.  We can provide students with the tools and questions they can use to decode and understand political cartoons.

Investigating Personal Primary Sources with Elementary Students

April 16, 2020 By Melissa Knowles

Where do you find elementary school historians? The answer can be right in your digital classroom!