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@TeachingLC Activity Explores Primary Sources, One Piece at a Time

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In September, the Library of Congress launched its @TeachingLC Twitter feed for K-12 educators.  Since then, we’ve eagerly accepted the challenge of sharing rich primary sources and teaching materials in easy-to-use bites of 140 characters or less.

Many of our tweets offer a classroom-ready activity: something that a teacher can do immediately without preparation.  For example, a tweet might link you to a historical photograph or map and provide a critical thinking prompt to use with your students as they examine the item.

@TeachingLC highlights primary sources that are relevant to the K-12 curriculum, are related to the date or season, or are unusual and amazing — items intended to spark interest and inquiry in your students.

#LCReveal Part 1 of 5
#LCReveal Part 1 of 5

One of the features of @TeachingLC is the #LCReveal, where we deconstruct a primary source image and tweet just one piece of it each day.  Guiding questions prompt student observation, inquiry and analysis all week long, as each daily tweet provides new details.  Showing just one section at a time helps younger students focus on details and helps older students slow down enough to gather visual evidence before making inferences and drawing conclusions.  On Friday, we reveal the entire image.

#LCReveal Part 3 of 5
#LCReveal Part 3 of 5

For example, here are two of five such pieces from a previous #LCReveal.  Click on each and look closely.  What details do you see?  What do you think is happening, where, and when?  What evidence do you see to support your speculations?  How does your background knowledge come into play?

After examining the pieces above, check your hypotheses by visiting the final reveal.  What are you still curious about?

Follow us at  Look for the hashtag #LCReveal to find past and upcoming reveals.

We’d love to hear back from you in the comment section, below; or, better yet, add to the conversation by tweeting your students’ responses to the primary source from your classroom!

Comments (2)

  1. How will people who do not regularly use Twitter receive these?

    • Thank you for asking. This activity is specific to our Twitter account–just follow @TeachingLC and watch for the next #LCReveal.

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