Classroom-ready resources to support Minnesota's teachers and students. Browse lessons and activities featuring primary sources, for all grade levels.
Ready-to-go classroom activities
NEW! Kids in School (Extended)
An extended version of the “How has school changed over time?” activity.
NEW! School Gardens
Students learn about school gardens in the past and present.
NEW! Where People Live
Students ask questions about places people live, now and in the past.
Primary v. Secondary Sources Activity
Students use objects in their home to examine the difference between primary and secondary sources.
Primary Source Analysis: Before and After Photo
Historic photos inspire students to create a comic of what happened before and after the photo was taken.
Primary Source Analysis: How has school changed over time?
Compare school experiences past, present, and future.
NEW! Monuments and Memorials
Students research and analyze the Christopher Columbus statue on the Minnesota State Capitol grounds and analyze different perspectives surrounding the question of whether to reinstall the statue or to remove it.
NEW! Suffrage Banners
Students draw connections between past and present ways of communicating about important issues and investigate a variety of protest banners from the Minnesota woman suffrage movement.
NEW! Analyzing Photographs for Bias
Students learn to examine photographs with an eye for bias.
NEW! Birdseye Maps
Students examine birdseye maps of Minnesota cities and compare them to modern maps.
NEW! Bohemian Flats
Students learn from a short video series about the Bohemian Flats neighborhood of Minneapolis.
Students analyze primary sources to broaden their understanding of colonialism.
NEW! Youth Movements
Students consider ways youth can effect change, past and present.
Primary Source Analysis: What is your story?
Collect objects to represent yourself then analyze someone else’s objects.
Primary Source Analysis: Women and World War I
Students analyze an antiwar banner from the woman suffrage movement, then make their own.
Primary Source Analysis: War Technology Comparison
Students compare World War I technology to today’s technology.
Primary Source Analysis: Post-World War I Soldier
Students examine primary sources to answer a question about life after World War I for some soldiers.
Videos & online resources
Afternoon Tea with Primary Sources
Brief primary source video instruction for students grades 1-6.
“Strongman” videos with author Kenneth C. Davis
Learn about 20th-century dictators, in five episodes.
Episode 1 Benito Mussolini
Episode 2 Adolf Hitler
Episode 3 Joseph Stalin
Episode 4 Mao Zedong
Episode 5 Saddam Hussein
"In the Shadow of Liberty" videos with author Kenneth C. Davis
Learn about the enslaved people of four presidents, in five episodes.
Votes for Women
Dive into MNHS’s online exhibit about Minnesota women who fought for voting rights and related causes. Discover ways to integrate the stories of four of these women into your instruction.
Episode 1 Sabrie Akin
Episode 2 Nellie Francis
Episode 3 Bertha Moller
Episode 4 Marie Bottineau Baldwin
History is Now
We are living in a historic moment. Learn more and explore our stories.
Our Home: Native Minnesota
Watch videos and find resources connected to MNHS’s permanent exhibit at the History Center.