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History Lesson Plans

Note: HTI does not maintain older content and as a result some links to external sources in the lesson plans may no longer be active

Focused on current events, Origins lesson plans were created by the pre-service teachers in the Social Studies M.Ed. program and Middle Childhood Education M.Ed. and B.S.Ed. Both licensure programs are part of the Department of Teaching and Learning at The Ohio State University. Each lesson utilizes an Origins: Current Events in Historical Perspective (origins.osu.edu) article and connects the topic with the New Ohio Learning Standards for Social Studies. The lesson plans vary in grade level, content, academic skills, use of technology, and instructional strategies. Many of the lessons contain a high level of detail as we work to develop pre-service teacher thinking about their teaching and instructional choices while they are learning the planning process. The pre-service teachers are committed to excellence in teaching social studies and to using current events to help middle and high school students engage with historical content.

The History Teaching Institute in conjunction with The Ohio State University Historic Costume & Textiles Collection provides lesson plans to teach history using historical clothing artifacts.

Back to History was a professional development program for K-12 teachers in Ohio's Educational Regional Service System (ERSS) Region 10, including Clark, Darke, Greene, Miami, Montgomery, and Preble counties. This program combined the resources of The Ohio State University, the Ohio Historical Society, and the Clark County Educational Service Center to support and improve the teaching of traditional American history.


The program was designed to increase teachers' knowledge, understanding, and appreciation of traditional American history through content seminars, analysis of primary source material, and visits to historic sites, museums, and cultural institutions.


Back to History was funded by the U.S. Department of Education Teaching American History Program. Programming concluded in June 2011 with the American Foreign Policy Summer Institute. The materials and resources from the original program web site have been updated and posted to this site for your use.


The History Teaching Institute has several primary-source based lesson plans for teachers of modern European history.
European History

Here you will find a variety of lesson plans for elementary, middle, and high school grades.  Most of these use primary sources, and all were prepared by teachers.
United States History

In conjunction with Ohio Chautauqua, the Ohio Humanities Council offered a Summer Institute for educators at The Ohio State University at Newark. The History Teaching Institute assisted in organizing the institute and Department of History faculty lead seminars on topics ranging from the Legacy of WWII to the Pacific Theater. Participants created lesson plans based on the content and principles acquired at the institute.
Ohio Chautauqua 2007: World War II

Once again, the Department of History partnered with the Ohio Humanities Council to offer a Summer Institute for educators in conjunction with Ohio Chautauqua in Westerville. Faculty lead seminars on topics ranging from Advancements in Medicine to the Gilded Age, and participants created lesson plans based on the content and principles acquired at the institute.
Ohio Chautauqua 2008: Inventors and Innovators

These standards-based, teacher-created, primary source lessons are based on editorial cartoons covering more than a century of American history.
The Opper Project: Using Editorial Cartoons in the Classroom

These standards-based, teacher-created, primary source lessons feature a variety of primary source materials from the Byrd Polar Research Center archives at Ohio State. High School students can learn historical skills using photographs and documents—all organized around the theme of polar exploration.
Cold Cases: Lessons in Historical Skills and Methods

Lessons in World History, World History AP, Geography, Family and Consumer Science, English, Journalism, Media Studies, and Global Studies for teaching Central Asia in World History.

includes teacher created lesson plans, bibliography, and links to on-line resources that address the military, diplomatic, political, and cultural aspects of World War I.

These lesson plans examine science, society, and culture from the 16th to the 18th centuries.