This qualitative multi-case study investigated strategies social studies teachers use to incorporate historical thinking skills in fourth and fifth grade classrooms to support the development of skills needed for understanding historical concepts. Three fifth grade teachers and one fourth grade teacher from four school systems participated in the study. Teachers completed an initial questionnaire to assess their use of historical thinking strategies. This was followed by a series of interviews and observations to determine how teachers incorporated these strategies. Constructivism was the theoretical basis for this study, and centered on how learners construct knowledge of the world around them. Three interviews and three observations were completed. Field notes were taken during observations and student work samples were collected. Information obtained through discussions with the participants revealed five overall themes: tools teachers used, ways to help students connect to history, critical thinking, helping develop student engagement, and processes leading to historical thinking. Historical thinking strategies the participants used assisted students in connecting with history and increased their engagement in the content. Findings suggest the participants wanted experiences that kept their students interested and engaged in learning. Throughout the study, participants worked to provide experiences for their students that were meaningful and helped them connect to history.
|Commitee:||Cantrell, Rita, Lucado, Charles|
|Department:||School of Education|
|School Location:||United States -- Georgia|
|Source:||DAI-A 78/11(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Elementary education, Social studies education|
|Keywords:||Historical thinking, Primary sources|
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