Are you looking for information about ways to do a better job teaching with collection materials, primary sources, archives, rare books, museum objects, etc.  This is not that website…yet…but it will be!

In its first iteration, this site is intended to be a clearinghouse for info on opportunities for library, archives, and museum professionals to learn more about teaching with collection materials.  The first pass, as of Fall 2014, will include an uneven balance of details for archivists and special collections librarians (and less so for museum educators and K-16 educators).

The goal is to make it easier for library, archives, and museum professionals to be aware of learning opportunities across our related but often disunited fields. We are all doing similar work with similar stuff, whether we’re:

  • museum educators in museum or archives
  • instruction staff connected to a special collections libraries
  • archivist in an archival repository tasked with educating undergrads
  • teachers/faculty working with K-12 or undergrad students
  • public historians developing programs in any setting

To tide you over, if you want a fantastic place to start on teaching with archival primary sources, don’t miss, a wonderful project from the Brooklyn Historical Society. Also, the 2017 Primary Source Literacy Guidelines (PDF) can be very helpful — the core is a tight 2-page list of learning objectives (pp 4-6) that can add structure to your lessons and guide discussions with any educators you’re working with.

Other useful recent resources include:

  • Teaching With Primary Sources (2016, Society of American Archivists, Trends in Archives Practice series)
    • Module 9: Contextualizing Archival Literacy by Elizabeth Yakel and Doris Malkmus
    • Module 10: Teaching with Archives—A Guide for Archivists, Librarians, and Educators by Sammie L. Morris, Tamar Chute, and Ellen Swain
    • Module 11: Connecting Students and Primary Sources—Cases and Examples by Tamar Chute, Ellen Swain, and Sammie L. Morris
    All three modules published in one print volume, but when it comes out as e-book, they may be available as individual modules
    Details » | Find in Library »
  • Using Primary Sources: Hands-On Instructional Exercises
    Edited by Anne Bahde, Heather Smedberg, and Mattie Taormina (2014, Libraries Unlimited)   Details » | Find in Library »
  • Past or Portal? Enhancing Undergraduate Learning through Special Collections and Archives
    Edited by Eleanor Mitchell, Peggy Seiden, and Suzy Taraba (2012, ACRL)   Details » | Find in Library »
  • Teaching with Primary Sources Bibliography, includes abstracts and links to articles where possible.  Project of SAA’s Teaching with Primary Sources Committee – Zotero format (or slightly out-of-date list-version)
  • New to this? Here’s a first quick read that sums up what archivists should be striving for: Carrie Schwier’s 2017 case study on facing challenges and working to become a better archives educator.