Mt. Vernon Professional Development Toolkit

Collaboration between RRCHNM and Mount Vernon has resulted in materials and resources to help teachers plan and conduct professional development for their colleagues. RRCHNM worked with Mount Vernon’s education staff to develop user personas, create professional development workshop guidelines, and tips on writing proposals. Educators can find a wide range of resources grouped by teaching methodology, themes, and grade level to aid in the planning and execution of successful professional development workshops.

While these materials are designed for Mount Vernon, many of the strategies and checklists for planning successful professional development can be adapted for other professional development scenarios as well.

Ford’s Theatre Videos

How can digital tools help capture your impact on the audiences you serve? Ford’s Theatre Society asked RRCHNM to produce a short video highlighting its signature teacher professional development programs — Civil War Washington Teacher Fellows and The National Oratory Fellows.

RRCHNM reviewed teacher survey data and user-generated video, conducted video interviews of participants, and filmed on-site workshops and performances at Ford’s Theatre. Working with the Ford’s Theatre team, RRCHNM crafted the script and storyboarded the video to highlight the power of bringing theatre, leadership, history, and language arts together in the classroom.

Ford’s Theatre shows the video to show current and potential funders, as well as educators and policy makers to demonstrate the impact their programs are having on educators and the students they teach.

Hidden in Plain Sight

Hidden in Plain Sight: Exploring American History is an online course for K–12 teachers that emphasizes iterative learning, primary source analysis, and an active approach to studying history.

More than 400 K-12 teachers from a wide geographic area have taken this online course with a 95% completion rate.

Through a contract with the Virginia Department of Education, RRCHNM researched and developed the course content, designed the visual interface, and built the site in Drupal, using CHNM-developed custom modules to enable instructors to interact with students, and students with each other, in near real-time.

Unveiling History

Unveiling History: Exploring America’s Past provided intensive professional development focused on history, historical thinking, and practical classroom activities for K-12 teachers in Montgomery County, Maryland.

RRCHNM collaborated to design the program content and structure; designed and built the website in WordPress; developed classroom activities; produced videos of historians and educators discussing and teaching with primary sources; and collated related resources from other RRCHNM sites and across the web.

During the grant period, teachers participated in summer institutes led by RRCHNM-affiliated faculty, and engaged in school-year activities focusing on American history, historical thinking skills, and practical applications. Themes included: History through Biography, History through Images, History through Objects, History through Drama, and History through Place.

The website served as a platform for teachers to share experiences and ideas with peers.

This Teaching American History (TAH) grant was funded by the U.S. Department of Education.

Everyday Americans, Exceptional Americans

Everyday Americans, Exceptional Americans provided intensive professional development focused on history, historical thinking, and practical classroom activities for K–12 teachers in Loudoun County, Virginia.

RRCHNM collaborated to design the program content and structure; designed and built the site in WordPress; developed classroom activities; produced videos of historians and educators discussing and teaching with primary sources; and collated related resources from other RRCHNM sites and across the web. During the grant period, teachers participated in workshops and graduate-level institutes on topics such as the American frontier, war and society, forging a nation, and America on the world stage. Some programs integrated language arts, ELL, and special education teachers.

This Teaching American History (TAH) grant was funded by the U.S. Department of Education.

Teachinghistory.org

Teachinghistory.org (National History Education Clearinghouse) is the central online location for accessing high-quality resources in K-12 U.S. history education. Explore the highlighted content on our homepage or visit individual sections for additional materials. Return often for new content and to join in the vibrant conversation about teaching history.