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Curriculum Resources

Syllabus Session Topic Bibliography

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    Place Home Curriculum Resources Units

Curriculum Resources for Unit Development by Course Topic Including Primary Sources, Websites, Activities and Lessons

Unit Development:

Template for Unit (Based on Wiggins)
Lesson Format
Unit for Place, Lowell


Understanding by Design Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe (Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, 1998) Concept design , curriculum design methodology. Selected readings available.

Understanding by Design Handbook Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe, (ASCD, 1999). Companion to assist educators in designing units and courses of study. Selected readings.

Mapping the Big Picture: Integrating Curriculum and Assessment, by Heidi Hayes Jacobs

Classroom Instruction that Works, by Robert Marzano. Discussion re Marzano book and student directed tasks, graphic organizers

State Standards, Curriculum Frameworks:
Massachusetts Department of Education, 450 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148. Education Reform and History/Social Science Standards (and other disciplines)

Virtual Education Space: Teacher toolkit and curriculum library: Connects to district standards as well as state.

Performance Assessment

The Case for Authentic Assessment, Grant Wiggins (ERIC Digest)

Alternative Assessment Implications for k-12 Social Studies, by Pat Nickell (ERIC Digest)

Performance Assessment, US Dept. Education, Science Performance Assess. Examples

Performance Assessment v. alternative assessment, Education Research Consumer Guides

Performance Assessment, Defining the Three-Story Intellect, by Jo Anne Wangsatorntanakhun (Thailand)

Assessment & Rubric Information, Kathy Shrock has organized links to many websites.

Creating Rubrics, From Family Education Network.

Concept Mapping, Graphic Organizers

Concept Mapping

Graphic Organizer This information relates to Inspiration Software

Standards-Based Units and Lessons (samples to be added)

 Information on Primary Sources

Cobblestone Publishing Co., Peterborough, NH 03452-7380. Check catalog online for issues of Theme Packs and Primary Sources that relate to Massachusetts.

Discovery Enterprises, Ltd., Carlisle Ma 01741. Perspectives on History Series, including primary sources. Paperback for grades 5-12. Many additional books relate to Massachusetts.

PBS series on Freedom: the History of US, by Joy Hakim, 10 Volumes in the History Curriculum series, (New York: Oxford University Press), 1993-93. Lively and full of images, primary sources. Teachers guides, classroom materials available on website. Ongoing during January-April 2003.

Library of Congress, Washington, D.C., primary source document and photographic collections, including examples from Mass., can be seen online at

Massachusetts Archives, State Archives Building, 220 Morrissey Boulevard, Boston, MA 02125. Town Maps, 1794, 1830 series; additional primary sources at State Archives include Mass. Archives collection, and public records of state government. Website has teacher lessons related to primary sources at

National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC 20408. Many primarysources relate to Massachusetts. The Digital Classroom has sample lessons and documents at

National Council for the Social Studies, 3501 Newark St., NW, Washington, DC 20016:Official journal, Social Education, issued monthly (see feature Teaching with Historic Documents). National Guidelines at

New York State Archives and Records Administration, Consider the Source: Historic Records in the Classroom, See Other Services


Interdisciplinary Connections

Literature source book (Tsongas Industrial History Center)

Historical Fiction Websites (Patricia Fontaine suggestions)

 Children's Literature Bibliography in draft form, “Kid Lit” by Cheryl Ann Schwartz, which contains many Mass. history and geography-related books.


Native Americans

Concord Museum, Native American Sourcebook  It offers text, maps, activities with background material on New England native peoples, past to present; see especially the section related to Land and People that includes a land use role playing activity. Can be purchased from bookshop, Concord, MA 01742.

Historic Deerfield  Frontier town: artifacts, educational materials.

Massachusetts Archaeological Society, Robbins Museum, Box 700, Middleboro, MA 02346. School visits to museum, programs and Archaeology Resource Kits.

Massachusetts Center for Native American Awareness; information on existing Mass. tribes; sponsors educational events; newsletter listing includes powwows, other events. Check out its website at

Massachusetts Commission on Indian Affairs, 1 Congress Street, Boston, MA 02114; represents Mass. tribes in relationship with state and local government agencies. Native American links can be found at

Massachusetts Historical Commission, State Archives Building, 220 Morrissey Boulevard, Boston, MA 02125. Native American site surveys, archaeological and historic preservation, Big Dig exhibit at the Commonwealth Museum; Publications to request: Boston’s Archaeological Past: The Archaeology of the Central Artery Project. A classroom guide for Grades 5-8. Related booklet, Highway to the Past: The Archaeology of Boston’s Big Dig. Annual Mass. Archaeology Week (annually in October) materials with information on events, exhibits, websites.

Memorial Hall Museum (relations with Indians after contact; especially good on earlycolonial development of town – see below towns)

Plimoth Plantation, museum exhibits and educational programs include Wampanoag tribal site; website contains extensive historical information on the Wampoags.

Mass. Populations, Immigration

Dreams of Freedom Museum, Milk Street, Boston, MA. See programs and resources for classrooms, visits.

National Council for the Social Studies. See especially Social Education. Vol. 62, #7, Nov/Dec 1998 on “Social Studies and the New Immigration”. Excellent articles, website listings, thematic approaches, etc.  

Tsongas Industrial History Center, located at the Boott Mill, Lowell National Historical Park is a hands-on history center for students to learn about the American Industrial Revolution, also includes immigration information. Check the website for programs and curriculum materials available.



Physical Geography, Ecology

National Geographical Society, Key to the National Geography Standards, Geography for Life: National Geography Standards, Washington, DC, 1994 Sherer, Thomas E. Jr., The Massachusetts Atlas, A Student’s Guide to the Geography of the Bay State (Old Lyme, Ct, Kilderatlas Publ. Co.) 1995. Also  A Teacher’s Guide to The Massachusetts Atlas.



Website listing in process


Community Settlement and History

Commonwealth Communities: Cities & Towns Profiles.

Commonwealth Museum. Office of the Secretary of State, Archives Building, 220 Morrissey Blvd., Boston, MA 02125. Listing of educational materials available at A Primer on Local History, The Massachusetts Ratification of the US Constitution. contains information on primary source locations: Selections  from Places of Massachusetts: A Local Studies Sourcebook, can be downloaded from the Mass. Studies Project website under Texts.

Massachusetts Historical Commission, State Archives Building, 220 Morrissey Boulevard, Boston, MA 02125. Town/city surveys and planning; preservation including state properties on national register of historic places.

Memorial Hall Museum – the American Centuries Project. See especially Life in a New England Town and The Evolution of Deerfield: A Study of the People and the Land at Three Century Turns — An Inquiry-based Social Studies Unit for High School Students (not completed yet).

MSP website on Community Connections for resource listings and suggested activites.

National Park Service, see Massachusetts historical sites and parks, including Lowell and New Bedford at website. Classroom materials at LearnNPS. Publication Teaching with Historic Places by National Trust for Historic Preservation and National Register of Historic Places, in cooperation with National Park Service (New York, 1995). For website see below.

National Register of Historic Places “Teaching with Historic Places” (TwHP) uses properties listed in the National Park Service's National Register of Historic Places to enliven history, social studies, geography, civics, and other subjects. TwHP has created a variety of products and activities that help teachers bring historic places into the classroom. Check out this site!


From Colony to State: History, Government, Society

Citizens Information Service, Office of the Secretary of State, Ashburton Place, Boston, MA 02108. Publishes Massachusetts Facts   This can be mailed or downloaded from CIS websitse or from Mass. Studies Project website texts on


Massachusetts Council for the Social Studies newsletter, Newsline, Carlyjane Dunn, ed., Bourne High School, 75 Waterhouse Rd., Bourne, MA 02532-3899. MCSS offers four videotapes on Massachusetts History, "Massachusetts Yesterday," created by Edward Kingsbury of Wellesley. • Part One: When the Pace of Life was Slower, 25 mins. • Part Two: The Early Decades, 14 mins. • Part Three: 1760-1860, 19 mins. • Part Four, 1861-1972, 17 mins. Four videotapes with scripts, resource materials, and lesson plans, $40 first set postpaid via UPS. Each additional set $25 ppd. Contact MCSS, c/o Mary Ellen Sorenson, 978-664-4447.


Massachusetts Historical Society: A wealth of primary sources and other historical resources  on history and government.


Mass. Studies Project website again: See Mass. History and Government under Features.


 Industrial History (I & II)      

Industrial History Primary Sources from MSP website. Click on Resources Database. When the general listing comes up, click on search resources and indicate Primary Sources under format and Industrial History under theme. Click again and 89 records will appear. You can scroll down to view all to make your selection or you can use the search function again and type in the community in the title (This can be done in the first search as well). The record will have information on its repository and context, and you can click on the thumbnail for an enlargement to download or transfer to your unit. Be sure to give credit.

 Resources on Industrial Revolution (from Patricia Fontaine)

 From Farm to Factory: Lowell:

 Tsongas Industrial History Center, located at the Boott Mill, Lowell National Historical Park is a hands-on history center for students to learn about the American Industrial Revolution. Check the website for programs and curriculum materials available


 Fall River, New Bedford Area

 Reforms in Society




            Social Institutions


 Slavery, Abolition, Diversity

Massachusetts Studies Project, See “African Americans in Massachusetts: Case Studies of Desegregation in 19th century Boston and Nantucket.” See Bibliography and Curriculum Resources.

   state and regional Systems:






© Massachusetts Studies Project 1997 - 2003