Wisconsin Historical Society National History Day in Wisconsin Update

January 2012
National History Day logo Greetings!

Regional event season is just around the corner! As students finish up projects and begin to think about competitions, we want to highlight a few resources that will help them make it to the finish line. For teachers, be sure to take a look at regional dates and registration deadline information.
Website Editor Logo

Students working with the NHD Website Editor have free access to the ability to upload videos to their websites. According to the NHD rules, student are not allowed to embed videos in their website - so how can they add a video to their website? 


Capture or Download

Some students may record their own video footage and some may be downloading content from the web. For web-based content, some websites will let you download a video file without a problem. For example, if you go to March on Milwaukee and select a video, you can right click on "access this item" and download the video as an MP4. Some websites, like the History Channel, do not have this feature enabled. In these cases, it's important to remember that saving the webpage is not actually downloading the video. You may need to contact the administrator of the page and request that file. 



Videos on NHD websites are limited to 45 seconds maximum. This means that students may need to edit the video, selecting the best 45 second clip that connects to the point they are proving. Bringing the clip into a video editing program, like iMovie or Windows MovieMaker (similar to the software your documentary students are using), will allow students to edit it. Sometimes these video editing programs only accept certain file types, so the students may have to convert their files before they can bring them into the program. Online Convert is a free, online tool that has been recommended by several teachers.   



When students save their video files, they have to be aware of the file type. The NHD Website Editor allows them to upload certain types of files, including M4V, MPG, MOV, WMV, AVI, MP4, and most other standard video formats. 


To upload a video file, students need to select the video icon from the multimedia elements toolbar in the NHD Website Editor and follow the instructions.


If your students are experiencing problems with the video function, it's most time efficient to have them send us an email right away. We are often able to provide advice. 
According to the NHD rules, students are not allowed to embed material, including YouTube videos, in their websites. This rule exists because it is impossible to get an accurate size count of the embedded content in the total file size limit for the website.

One of the most frequently asked questions we get from students about how to include this content in their History Day website. In general, students should follow the basic instructions laid out in the article above. Since downloading is not enabled in YouTube videos, students will likely need to employ an external service to capture this content. A service like KeepVid will take a URL and provide options for download in several different file formats.

As with all media in History Day projects, students should carefully question the value the material has in supporting and proving their argument. 
Another great resource for History Day students in Wisconsin available through BadgerLink is Encyclopedia Britannica. In addition to articles tailored to either middle or high school, students can find various images and media related to topics.  
Wisconsin Map
NHD regional events are just around the corner. To keep track of important dates and deadlines, participating teachers should: 
  • Locate their regional coordinator. Wisconsin is divided by county into six regions for the purposes of NHD competitions. Check our website to figure out your regional assignment.  
  • Say hello! Especially if it's your first year participating in NHD, be sure to notify your regional coordinator that you intend to send students to the competition. It helps us with event planning and we can make sure you are on our mailing list for important notifications.  
  • Download registration forms. Event registration forms are on our website. Be sure to download these important documents. 
  • Know your registration deadline. The registration deadline for events is often at least two weeks before the actual competition - and sometimes more. Be sure you know when materials must be received by the regional coordinator.  Keep in mind that paper and website entries are due at the registration deadline so judges can view projects in advance of the competition.  
Judging at NHD Events
Many schools with a large number of History Day participants will soon begin holding their school-level competitions. These events serve as a way to narrow down the number of projects a school can send to a regional competition. Additionally, school events can be a great way to show off the hard work of all History Day students to peers, administration, family members, and the community.   
  • Online Event Planning Resources: For teachers planning a school event for the first time, consider checking out our advice on planning your school contest. Experienced teachers should check out our downloadable event materials.
  • Event Assistance:  NHD in Wisconsin staff members are available to assist with school History Day events. We can help to provide training, evaluate student projects, or help to manage the event. Email us to see if we are available. 
History Day Exhibit Boards
High-quality exhibit boards are once again available from the NHD in Minnesota program. Teachers and students like these boards because they offer more space than a traditional science fair board at a competitive price. These boards come in black or white with optional title panes also available for purchase. Boards must be purchased in packs of 10 and are available through the Minnesota Historical Society's online store.   
National History Day logo

The NHD national office is now accepting applications for summer internships in at the national office for the 2012 NHD National Contest. Candidates must be able to be in College Park, MD from June 1st - 30th.


Please share this message with eligible, interested applicants. This opportunity is open to past participants (at any level) in NHD. Applicants can be any major, but must be enrolled in college and have completed at least two years. More details are available on the NHD website. Complete applications are due by March 16, 2012.


Stay on top of the latest information about the Society, our historic sites and museums, historical image collections, bestselling publications, and varied programs. Pick one or pick all! Sign up for more newsletters and email updates. 

  • Society Weekly E-newsletter
  • Historic Sites and Museums Monthly E-Newsletter
  • Wisconsin Historical Images Monthly E-Newsletter
  • Wisconsin Historical Society Press Periodic Email Updates
  • National History Day in Wisconsin Monthly E-Newsletter 
  • Educator Update Monthly E-Newsletter
Sarah Michele and SarahTHANKS FOR READING!
Thank you for reading! We appreciate your support of National History Day in Wisconsin.  We are excited to have you as part of our program!

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