Otten, E.H. “Using Primary Sources in the Primary Grades,” ERIC DIGEST ED 419772, 1998.
Brief advocacy of utilizing primary sources in the elementary classroom, based on the premise that they help to bridge the gap between the past and the present. Author cites the NCSS Curriculum Standards for the Social Sciences’ “Time, Continuity, and Change” thematic strand’s performance expectation that elementary students have an ability to ʺidentify and use various sources for reconstructing the past, such as documents, letters, diaries, maps, textbooks, photos and othersʺ (NCSS 1994, 2D, 34).
Reed, Jennifer H. and Jeffrey D. Kromrey. “Teaching Critical Thinking in a Community College History Course: Empirical Evidence from Infusing Paul’s Model,” College
Student Journal 35:2 (June 2001): 201‐15 (Available through Education Full Text). Authors adopted noted CT expert Richard Paulʹs model for critical thinking to community‐college level history instruction, training students to employ CT to analyze primary documents. Their ANCOVA test results suggested that the experimental group performed significantly higher than the control group in historical thinking and in general critical thinking skills, with large effect sizes in each case, yet no significant differences were notable on the other tests. Authors felt that infusing Paulʹs model into classroom activities appeared to promote studentsʹ abilities to think historically and critically without lessening their overall knowledge of history content.
Seymour, Dale and Ed Beardslee. Critical Thinking Activities. Palo Alto, CA: Dale
Seymour Publications, 1990. Authors consider CT activities indispensable for every child’s primary‐level mathematics education. Their book presents basic activities focused on three types of CT skills: patterns, imagery and logic. A strong emphasis is placed on numeric problem solving. While this work is not directly applicable to the teaching of history, it could be creatively adapted to developing visual literacy‐based CT exercises.
Shiroma, Deanne. “Using Primary Sources on the Internet to Teach and Learn History,”
ERIC DIGEST ED 442 729, 2000. A good general summary of 1) types and uses of primary sources; 2) methods of using the Internet to obtain primary sources; 3) recommended Web sites, which the author considers “exemplary.”
Tsui, Lisa. “A Review of Research on Critical Thinking,” Typescript of a Paper Presented at the Annual Meeting of the Association for the Study of Higher Education, Miami, FL
(ERIC ED 427 572). Author’s attempt to go beyond McMillan’s 1987 study to review the research on CT among college students. She evaluated a total of 62 studies, the majority of which had indicated that over the course of an undergraduate program, students’ critical thinking skills improved. However, Tsui’s analysis revealed considerable inconsistency as to the identified factors that affected this growth. Overall, she found evidence that in comparison to courses taught in a more traditional manner, greater gains in CT scores were found among courses with instructional paradigms that emphasized problem‐solving or critical thinking, class participation, inquiry and higher‐order thinking. Article includes very good
general summary of CT literature and a thorough bibliography.