PA Digital is excited to announce the release of four brand new primary source sets! The sets, comprised of content from our wonderful PA Digital contributors, are meant to encourage use of primary sources in the classroom. Primary sources allow users to engage in historical content from an experiential point of view in a way that textbooks don’t always permit. Being able to grasp the experiences of others through these items adds an important layer to understanding history. We hope they add an exciting element to conversations in the classroom and beyond. The sets can be found on our website under the “For Educators” tab, or at the link above.

The PA Digital Primary Source Set homepage.

The sets are focused on varying topics in Pennsylvania history: The Fight for Suffrage, Quaker Beliefs and Practices in America, Exploring Student Protest, and WWII and the Pennsylvania Homefront. Each set contains 10 primary sources, applicable education standards, discussion questions, and classroom activities. They can also be tailored and scaled to meet various grade levels and lessons. Users are welcome to slice or chop the sets up to meet their needs– and can be used in lesson plans beyond history courses. We hope that these sets act as a valuable supplement to existing lesson plans around these topics or similar areas of study.

A view of the Exploring Student Protest set.

PA Digital began planning for the creation of these sets in the fall of 2017. In January 2018, two students from the Temple College of Education, Rocki Schy and Devin Johnson, were hired to research and shape the sets. Devin Johnson created the sets on Exploring Student Protest and WWII and the Pennsylvania Homefront, and Rocki Schy created the sets on The Fight for Suffrage and Quaker Beliefs and Practices in America. Their work was guided by Dr. Tim Patterson of the Temple College of Education and Margery Sly, Director of the Temple University Special Collections Research Center. We also received input from the PA Digital Education Advisory Group, comprised of archivists, librarians, and educators across the state.

We hope to continue learning about how we can improve these resources. If you are interested in providing feedback, please fill out our assessment form here. We’d love to hear about how you used the sets, what you liked, and what could be improved going forward.

Thank you to everyone involved in the creation of these sets, as well as all of our contributors for their exciting collections! We appreciate all of the hard work that went into creating and publishing the sets. PA Digital will be working to create new sets to be published in the next year.


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