WELLSTONE INTERNATIONAL HIGH SCHOOL
"I teach history at Wellstone International High School, Minneapolis Public Schools. Wellstone serves newcomer immigrants. At Wellstone, History Day is a large part of our college prep. All of my students read below grade level in English, but they can excel in History Day because it allows them to use their strengths in creating a project. Through History Day, students learn how to research, work effectively in groups, use technology, edit, cite, and research: all skills they need for any post-secondary program. Our graduates consistently tell me that History Day was one of the most valuable experiences they had in preparing for college. Before teaching at Wellstone, I taught at Edison High School, Anthony and Ramsey, and W.O.C. alternative high school."
Carol's teaching advice and materials:
- Create a History Day checklist with last year's dates to get you started. Start with ambitious due dates and adjust as the year goes on.
- Have students judge two projects from previous years so they understand how judging goes.
- Use the HD judging sheets to grade projects, although I grade the process paper separately.
- Don't worry about a thesis until students are pretty far along in the research process, forcing it early doesn't work. It has to "bubble up."
- Most years, trying to trip students up with a fake website to make them skeptical about web sources.
- Exhibit organization worksheets from the History Day website work well.
- History Day Contract: This needs to be tweaked depending on student needs. Hard work and communication allows many students to succeed.
- Choosing a Topic
- History Day Checklist
- History Day Belief Statement
If you are interested in speaking with Carol about some of her resources, she is happy to help. Email History Day staff for her contact information.