Sharing Our Teaching Resources: Evenings of Exploration

Educators at Open HouseWe hosted our annual open houses for educators at the National Archives in Washington, DC, on September 24th, and at the National Archives at New York City on October 15th.

Educators from various schools, locations, and grade levels came to explore our interactive tools and learn how to implement them in their classrooms. Here are some of the resources that we featured.

Inside the classroom

Online Resources

DocsTeach is our online tool for teaching with documents from the National Archives. You can explore and use primary sources and find great lessons created by the National Archives and other educators. And if you’re feeling more creative, use any of our tools to craft your own fresh material for your students.Viewing Online Resources

The Digital Vaults is an interactive online exhibition showcasing documents from the holdings of the National Archives.

Our online catalog is our main database for access to the digitized holdings of the National Archives, and composed of millions of digitized documents and archival information about them.

Founders Online is our searchable archive of the correspondence and other writings of six of the Founding Fathers.

Distance Learning

Connecting Via VideoconferenceIt’s a great way to learn from afar! Whether it’s in the classroom or at home, our interactive programs showcase historical documents, images, maps and posters that can help students understand and put documents in context. We offer videoconferences for students as well as webinars for teachers — all for free.

Bill of Rights eBook and App

Check out our free app for tablets and eBook, launched to commemorate the 225th anniversary of Congress’s passage of the Bill of Rights.

Bill of Rights AppThe app is a fun learning tool providing an interactive experience about the creation of the Bill of Rights. Students can “experience” debates, the revision process, and more. The app is available for iPad, Android, and in PDF format.

The eBook is a microscopic look at James Madison and his role in creating the Bill of Rights and creating the Constitution. It is available on our website and iBooks.


Discover all of our eBooks — including on topics such as baseball, the Emancipation Proclamation, and the Constitution — on our website.

Outside the classroom

The Constitution-In-Action Learning Lab in Washington, DC

In our learning lab at the National Archives Museum students play the roles of researchers and archivists as they analyze and connect primary sources to the Constitution. This free, fun, hands-on program gives students the chance to discuss and focus on the Constitution in groups of 12-36 participants. It’s not an ordinary field trip!

In the RotundaExhibits in Washington, DC

During the open house, educators visited our exhibits as well. Our permanent and temporary exhibits offer a shorter option for DC-based field trips. Students can see foundational documents like the Bill of Rights, Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, and Magna Carta.

The Learning Center at the National Archives at New York City

We offer free curriculum-based, student field trips for schools, home-schoolers, camps, and other learning communities to learn about the National Archives and the rich primary sources it holds that tell our American story. All visits are free, can accommodate 15-35, and are offered Monday through Friday.

Presidential Libraries

Reading the Presidential PressOur Presidential Libraries around the country provide a broad range of educational opportunities for students of all ages. Each Library offers programs designed to introduce students to American history and the Presidency and to inform teachers about the use of primary source documents in teaching history.

Primarily Teaching

Our annual summer institute, held at locations around the country, is a great way to get hands on with primary sources. It’s designed for teachers to get first-hand experience researching original documents in our holdings, as well as our online resources. In this multi-day workshop, educators research about specific case studies, digitize documents, and create DocsTeach activities. Check out some of the work of our past participants!

Today’s post came from Bonnie Simmons, social media intern in our Education and Public Programs Division.

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