Wednesday, December 13, 2006

UNESCO World Heritage Site

I'm doing some research about Vikings which were featured in the December/January Issue of The Beaver. The UNESCO World Heritage Site actually has a really cool education section. The website itself is still being worked on a bit, but it does have links to an educational kit all about World Heritage Sites and activities you can do in the classroom. The kit is also available in French and English.

If you're doing units on heritage, community, multiculturalism, etc. this is definitely something worth checking out. And if you sign up on the UNESCO site you can get a free map!

Saturday, December 09, 2006

History Podcasts

Well we checked for a pulse and it turns out I am still here.

I've been burrowed away for a little while working through the busy Christmas rush, but I'm also working on a few new projects here. One thing that has been in the back of my mind for a little while now is creating history podcats.

Admitedly there is a lot online at this moment already in this area. A quick search on Google brought me to a few examples such as the Baseball History Podcast. There you can learn about Arky Vaughan - Yes the Arky Vaughan. It is actually a fun website for baseball junkies, and I would definetly include myself in that category.

I'm really interested in trying to get more academic history out to the general public. Professor Bob Hackett has his own website with History podcasts. Good stuff and actually a neat interview with Bob can also be found at Small World Podcast.

But by far the best History podcasts available online, and the thing that got all of this running through my head to begin with, is The Ongoing History of New Music. Even if Alan Cross got this started for Radio, it is an amazing program that every public historian could learn from. It's edgy, smart, educational, and entertaining. Check it out if you're thinking of getting into the podcast realm.

I would really like to get more professors, in particular with Canadian History, to provide their lectures for online podcasts. I was also thinking that for students busy running around or going to the gym could listen to lectures as they go about their day. You could also create specific topic podcasts, as Bob Hackett has, so students can study specific topics.

Taking this back into the public history world this also might help individuals who are visually impaired to still have access to publications about historical topics.

We're going to do some fun stuff here...

Monday, November 06, 2006


I just got back from the Ontario History and Social Science Teacher's Association annual conference that took place this weekend in Toronto. I was a great chance to see what kinds of projects people are working on, and lots of online material. There was also a great presentation about the work being done by the Critical Thinking Consortium, more on that later.

I was really interested to see how interested teachers were in primary sources online. I attended a workshop from John Myers, OISE, and Lisa Singer from the Ontario Archives. They have a new website that they have just launched that puts together lesson plans and primary sources. It's fun stuff and I think it really ties well with the idea of teaching about what historians do. You can check it out here.

One of the teachers asked how they would find information to cut through the multitude of primary source websites that are now being produced. Thus I've created a new list of the best primary source websites on the net. The list will keep growing so check it out often.

It's funny though, after all of these cool projects I realized that there is less out there for teachers interested in teaching students how to create their own digital projects. This is a big focus of my own work with the History Society newsletters. It's a creative place on the web, and as I have said before, there is no reason why science should have first dibs on technology.

Sunday, October 29, 2006


A little bit about some projects that I'm working on right now. I am the Education Program Coordinator for Canada's National History Society. It's a new position and my main project right now is developing a series of online newsletters that contain articles from The Beaver:Canada's History Magazine and Kayak:Canada's History Magazine for Kids.

The newsletters are pretty cool and allow the History Society to share content with a wide range of teachers and educators. It's neat to think that even just a few years ago a similar newsletter would not have been possible. But more than that it's a fun opportunity to also help teachers get more familiar with web based projects with educational goals.

I've started working on creating a series of blogs related to the material in The Beaver. This hopefully will just be the start of many more such projects. In one of the upcoming issues I hope to expand a project that I worked on this past summer with Professor Bill Turkel. In that instance we used Google Maps to map back issue of The Beaver magazine, locating individual articles by place. You can check out the example of the work here. Hopefully in the future we can use this program to create easy and fun projects that teachers can use in the classroom.

For more info on receiving either free newsletter please give me a shout at

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Digital History Education

Welcome To the Digital History Education Blog.

Did you ever notice when you were going through school that everyone always talked about "Science and Technology." What did science do that earned it access to all new forms of technology. Increasingly new and exciting ways of using techology to teach about History and the past are making their way into the classroom.

Websites, Blogs, and online activties all lend themselves to learning about history in an engaging and interesting way. This blog wil explore the possibilities and uses of technology in the classroom.