August 2020

An Historic Back to School


History happens everyday in 2020. This Back to School is no different. No matter what your district’s plan is for back to school, we know it’s going to be a historic back to school season across the country.

As history lovers, we’re watching all of the events of 2020 with the thought: how will our future generations look back on this? How will our grandchildren be taught the year 2020? And this begs the question: what does a primary source look like from 2020? Is it a TikTok video? A recorded Zoom lesson from spring? Or something as simple as a journal?

Since we’re living in an historic back to school, encourage your students —no matter their age—to keep a journal. Use these journal prompts with your students to create the primary sources of the future.

Grades K–5

  • What is the most fun thing you’ve done this week? What did you like about it?
  • What is your favorite thing about going to school each day? What do you like about it?
  • If I could change one thing about the world, I’d change _________. Why would you change it?
  • What is your favorite thing about yourself?

Grades 6–8

  • Write a headline for each day.
  • What is your top news story for the day?
  • Why is this important to you?
  • How do you feel about these events?

Grades 9–12

  • What is the headline of the day?
  • Does this headline affect your life? How?
  • How do you feel about this headline?
  • What do you think tomorrow’s headline will be?

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