I have had two tabs open in my browser for the last rotation and a half. Since my school is on a 7-day rotation, with each day being a letter of our school name, that means this tab has been open since the previous P day. Today is E day. That is a long time to keep something hanging around but these two tabs are worth it and here is why.
The first is a blog post from the Cult of Pedagogy that got me from the title, Best PD Ever: The Gilder Lehrman Teacher Seminars. At the time that I first saw this post, I was researching effective PD (which I then shared here) so of course I was going to open it up and read it. Gonzalez talked about a series of teacher seminars that immerse the teacher learners in the specific history experience during one week residential seminars. Depending on your area of study, this could be Mount Vernon for the George Washington experience, New York City for the 9-11 experience, or Missoula, Montana for the Lewis and Clark experience.
I had not heard of Gilder Lehrman so I went to visit their site. I have still not left. It is a veritable treasure trove of learning from all eras of history from The Americas and American Indians, exploration to the present. You can explore by era or by themes across time. There is so much here for history teachers, history buffs, students, or anyone like me who just likes to learn. There are primary sources like letters from soldiers that you can listen to while reading along, or this letter from a slave to his mother, or this one from Abraham Lincoln to his wife. They also have Multimedia like this one about Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass that I coincidently heard about during Dave Chapelle’s opening monologue on SNL, where Abraham Lincoln asked Frederick Douglass what he thought of his inaugural speech (Douglass was not allowed in to the White House because the guards did not know him. Lincoln saw him and shouted, “Let him in, he’s that’s my friend Douglass,”), or these about the Thirteen Colonies. There are Interactive features, teacher resources, video series, and so much more. The site is free to sign up and use, many things viewable without logging in. For educators there are professional development opportunities, online programs, self-paced courses, summer seminars, teacher resources, and that is just the beginning.
To have this amazing collection of resources at your fingertips is incredible. While this post may be short, it is packed with information that I encourage you to spend some time checking out and then passing along.