Wisconsin Historical Society National History Day in Wisconsin Update

September 2009
National History Day logo Greetings!

Greetings from National History Day in Wisconsin and welcome back. We hope that you had a wonderful summer and are excited to begin another school year. We are! Below you will find a ton of great information about the upcoming NHD season. We even have some great news to report from the 2009 national contest. Read on!
Teacher in ArchivesFALL 2009 EDUCATOR WORKSHOPS
Making History Day Happen
This workshop will introduce new teachers to the structure of the National History Day program and provide advice and ideas on incorporating History Day into your own classroom. NHD in Wisconsin staff and experienced classroom teachers will provide sample materials and demonstrate resources available to Wisconsin educators through the program. Student participants will also talk about their experiences and show examples of projects. Attendees will leave with ideas and tools they need to start a new year of History Day!
  • Green Bay: Thursday, Oct 29 (9:30 am - 1 pm)
  • Milwaukee: Saturday, Dec 5 (8:30 am - 3:30 pm)
  • Madison: Tuesday, Oct 20 (4 - 7 pm)
  • Stevens Point: TBA
  • Register Online!
Beyond the Basics: A Closer Look at History Day
"Beyond the Basics" is an opportunity for educators familiar with National History Day to take a closer look at advanced topics related to the program. Participants will discuss the research process, strategies to guide student research, and the characteristics of a good bibliography. Participants will also review skills that are keys to any successful research project, including thesis statements, project organization, and have the opportunity to "be the judge" in evaluating History Day projects. Current participation in NHD is not required, but knowledge of the structure and framework of the program is highly recommended.

Exploring the Website Category
Don't be afraid of the newest NHD category! This workshop will teach you the basics of an NHD website and give you an opportunity to create your own site with the NHD Website Editor. This workshop will address the newest rules for the category for the 2009-2010 school year. We will also spend time taking a closer look at actual NHD websites. Participants will leave with a better understanding of the structure and framework of the category and ideas on how to guide students in creating website entries. Current participation in NHD is not required, but knowledge of the structure and framework of the program is highly recommended.

Join us for food and great conversation! Connect with other teachers in your area and get excited about a new National History Day year! These informal get-togethers will give participating teachers a chance to talk with other History Day educators about a variety of subjects. This year, topics include the annual theme and important changes in the website category. Most importantly, participants can talk with each other about ideas for implementation, and discuss their profession in general while meeting new colleagues. You'll also be able to take part in the popular NHD materials swap meet! Participants are welcome to attend any roundtable,even if it is not in their assigned region. Current or past participation in National History Day is required. Please RSVP to the state NHD office at least three days before the roundtable.
  • Eau Claire: Thursday, Oct 8: 11:45 am - 1 pm (Lunch break at NWEA Convention)
  • La Crosse: Thursday, Oct 15: 4:30 - 7:00 pm
  • Madison: Thursday, Oct 22: 4:30 - 7 pm
  • Green Bay: Thursday, Oct 29: 4:30 - 7 pm
Curriculum materials for the 2010 school will arrive in classrooms next week. It took a bit longer than we expected to get them ready - but we think the delay is worth it. We've made the transition from a printed packet to a digital curriculum CD. Each CD contains a ton of great information for new and participating teachers about the program. With this new format, we've been able to include several times more information than we could in the printed packet and have lots of additional possibilities for the future. If you have additional feedback on this new format, please feel free to let us know what you think!
All teachers that participated in NHD in 2009 are automatically signed up for the 2010 packet if they completed a school registration form. All other interested educators can sign up online!
Sarah Michele Classroom PresentationCLASSROOM PRESENTATIONS
Let the NHD in Wisconsin staff bring the excitement of History Day into your classroom. This interactive program is designed to fit into one class period. We will introduce your students to the National History Day program, familiarize them with the presentation categories and discuss this year's theme. The presentation also includes the "Three Hats of the Historian" (a visual demonstration of the research process), a discussion of the importance of topic narrowing, and tips on creating projects in NHD project categories.
It is possible to arrange visits for multiple class periods and teachers. Dates are subject to the availability of the staff, so please contact the NHD in Wisconsin office as soon as possible to make arrangements for your classroom visit.

The renovation of the WHS Library Reading Room is finally underway! Work began on June 21, 2009 and renovations to rehabilitate the space to its original 1900 grandeur are projected to be finished at the end of January, 2010. In the meantime the library is still open, but facilities for researchers have shrunk to about a dozen available seats in the reading room. This means that we will be unable to host research fieldtrips to the library for most of the 2009-2010 NHD season. There is still access to the stacks and students are welcome to visit on their own or request materials through interlibrary loan. To learn more about the renovation, visit the WHS website. For more information on fieldtrip alternatives, please contact the NHD in Wisconsin office.
You're invited to the 4th Annual NHD Kick-Off Event at the Chippewa Valley Museum on Tuesday, September 29th from 6-8 PM. Teachers and students are invited to:
  • Explore the 2010 NHD theme: "Innovation in History: Impact and Change" from a regional perspective.
  • See projects from National History Day students.
  • Tour the museum's archives and exhibit galleries to discover primary source materials.
  • Meet professionals who will introduce you to resources for use with this year's projects.
  • Receive hand-outs with tips for talking with judges and conducting project interviews.
  • Enter a research "scavenger hunt" contest and win fun prizes!

This event is free and open to all National History Day participants. For questions or for a promotional poster to distribute to students, contact Karen Jacobson, Educator, at the Chippewa Valley Museum at (715) 834-7871 or k.jacobson@cvmuseum.com.

During the 2009-2010 school year, National History Day invites students to research topics related to the theme: Innovation in History: Impact and Change.
  • You can read the 2010 theme sheet on our website.
  • The national 2010 NHD Theme Book has some great essays and lessons related to the theme. You can download your own copy as a PDF from the national office.
  • Educator Note: Students will likely want to look at inventions. However, remind them that innovation means change, which can happen through events, people, and ideas as well. Innovation can occur in the social, political, economic, or cultural spheres as well as technological. Understanding the breadth of the word "innovation" opens up many more possibilities for student research.  
All of fifty of our national finalists did a fantastic job at this year's national contest. We are proud of their accomplishments. They represented our state proudly and showed us just how much students can achieve through National History Day. You can read about the experience in their own words in our blog.

Many Wisconsin students were also recognized for their accomplishments in the contest itself. See below for the rankings of all our entries in final rounds:

  • Laura, Milwaukee, placed 1st in the senior paper category
  • Teddy, Wauwatosa, placed 6th in the junior website category
  • Elizabeth, Whitefish Bay, placed 6th in the junior paper category
  • Jeffrey and Nate, Madison, placed 6th in the junior group documentary category
  • Jacob, Durand, placed 6th in the senior individual documentary category
  • Emma, Middleton, placed 7th in the senior paper category
  • Annelise, La Crosse, placed 11th in the junior individual exhibit category

Congratulations to these students and the rest of our 9,000 participants in the state last year!

 Sarah Michele and SarahTHANKS FOR READING!
Thanks for reading. We are excited to have you as part of National History Day in Wisconsin!

Sarah Clement, State Coordinator
National History Day in Wisconsin
Wisconsin Historical Society