This post is by Michael Apfeldorf of the Library of Congress.
Join the Library of Congress this October 25-28 in Kansas City, Missouri, at the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) conference. Library staff will offer two workshops in which participants can learn how to access millions of free digitized primary sources related to STEM topics and practice hands-on, inquiry-based strategies for using them with students:
- Exploring Practices, Nature of Science, and Science in Society: Analyzing Historical Primary Sources from the Library of Congress – promote critical thinking skills, while helping students develop a deeper understanding of real-world scientific practices, the nature of science, and connections between science and society (October 26 @ 1:00 pm; Kansas City Convention Center 2102B)
- Examining Socio-scientific issues with Historical Primary Sources – help students reflect on the connections between science, society, and social change through authentic historical examples and primary documents, while honing students’ critical thinking skills. (October 26 @ 3:40 pm; Kansas City Convention Center 2102A)
Of course, whether or not you attend the conference, you can still explore the Library’s online collections and teacher resources for STEM-related resources. Here are a few places to start:
- Browse our ready-made primary source sets, each of which includes a curated list of primary sources and related teacher resources. Our newest STEM-related primary source set focuses on Ecology, but many other sets are also available, including:
- Charts and Graphs
- Inventions and Innovations
- The Inventive Wright Brothers
- Natural Disasters
- Scientific Data: Observing, Recording, and Communicating Information
- Understanding the Cosmos: Changing Models of the Solar System and the Universe
- Weather Forecasting
- Women in Science and Technology
- Explore the Teaching with the Library blog for additional primary source suggestions and teaching strategies. When searching the blog, note that you can focus your explorations on STEM-related posts.
- Explore the Library’s collections, including the papers of Alexander Graham Bell, Carl Sagan, and Samuel Morse, as well as the early work of Emile Berliner and Thomas Edison.
For your reference and ease of sharing, download these handouts summarizing some of the ways primary sources may be used by science educators:
- Primary Sources in the Science Classroom: Nature of Science
- Primary Sources in the Science Classroom: Cross Cutting Concepts and Phenomena
We encourage you to examine these primary source collections and teaching materials further or join us for a workshop at NSTA. And please take a moment to leave a comment letting us know what you discover!
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