A couple of times a month (whenever there is a light day when I don’t find much that really interests me to highlight for a “Today in History” article), we will take a little break to make some history of our own. There are lots of ideas here–choose a few for today, and when another “Make Some History” day rolls around, you can try some more…
Resources and Activities:
1. Get some old magazines from a thrift store, or some current ones from a grocery or book store, and create a montage, collage or scrapbook depicting interesting events, people or issues from the time. You can use headlines, images, quotes, personal commentary or illustration, etc. to create the effect you want.
2. Prepare an oral or written report on your piece.
3. Choose a person or time in history and dress, eat, speak and do as would have been typical of that time. Record your impressions in a journal.
4. Choose a family or community member and make an audio recording of their stories. Provide them with a copy to give to loved ones. (See the printables below to download a form you can use to help prompt questions for this interview!)
5. Contact a local historical society, museum, university or chamber of commerce to find out about historical sites, stories and founding of your community.
6. Check your state historical registry for sites of interest in your area. Visit them and make a record of your experience in photos, writings or in some other way.
7. Create a journal using a binder, composition notebook or diary. Decide on a dedicated purpose for the journal, such as:
- Record favorite quotes from literature.
- Keep a record of the time and content of your studies.
- Write down inspiration you receive, your response to it, and the consequences of your actions.
- Keep a record of your dreams.
- Write down 3, 5, 10 or 15 stories from your life. Start with the ones you consider most important, then progress to earliest memories, moving toward the present time.
- There are forms in the printables to help with this project as well!
8. Write an essay or blog using the following ideas as possible guidelines:
- Draw attention to issues, people or events that you think are deserving of greater consideration or notoriety.
- Analyze a current situation, leader, or issue based on a historical outcome.
- Draw an analogy from literature to a current situation, person or issue.
Consider who is your audience, and how to build rapport and influence.
- Do they share your core beliefs?
- Do they use a different vocabulary than you?
- Do they hold passionate views about issues to which you are contrary, indifferent or ignorant (environment, civil liberties, victims’ rights, religion, health practices, war, guns, etc.)?
- If so, do you need to do preparatory work to better build rapport?
- What forum is the best to deliver your message?
- Should you use humor?
- Should you use sarcasm?
- Should you cite scholarly works?
- Should you use stories?
- Should you speak from your own experience?
- Should you use professional objectivity?
- What tone, style and level of technical precision would be most effective?
9. Using stories from a family or community member, or a person or event from history, create a coloring book. Remember to use simple, bold lines to facilitate the coloring project.
10. Create a word find activity using events in history.
11. Play 20 questions about a book, person, event, etc.
12. Create a card game of pairs that matches dates with faces, or events with names, etc. This card game can be used for Go Fish, Old Maid, and with some standard deck-style numbering, for just about any other card game.
13. Make a cross word puzzle using key words and clues from today’s news, a family story or a historical event.
More fun with history…! (Lots of great printables in this section)
Create your own personal history:
Become a historian!
- All About You
- Food for Thought
- Edible Memories
- Record an Oral History
- Fun with Primary Sources
- Fun with Secondary Sources
- Investigating an Artifact
Ideas for activities or discussion:
- Where do your ancestors come from?
- What language did they speak before English?
- Do you have any family names that are passed down?
- What does your name mean?
- Do you have any long-standing family traditions or beliefs?
- Do you know where those traditions began?
- What traditions has your family purposely left behind?
- What are you doing to preserve your history for others that follow?