Historical Research & Writing Workshop
In this writing workshop we will be taking an in depth look into writing, with a specific focus on the historical side. The student will be responsible for composing their own research paper based on the event, person, item, idea, etc. from history of their choosing. We will spend the course learning how to build a piece of historical writing from an idea into a well polished essay.
The beginning of the course will focus on choosing a topic and learning to use sources effectively. From there we will build our research skills and learn some of the basics of good paper writing. Grammar and spelling will take a backseat to structure and solid presentation of evidence and ideas. The end of the workshop will be based around working with peers to solidify their research. Assignments will reflect the step in the research process that we are learning each week. As this is a writing class, more emphasis will be placed on the discussions than on the quizzes. Come prepared to do some writing!
While the course is described as a writing course, it should be noted that research makes up the bulk of the course. Students will be expected to participate in discussions with their instructor and their peers. However, how they present their research is entirely up to them. A paper is not the only way to present research! Documentaries, video presentations, PowerPoints, even movies could be all considered ways to present the research.
We will be focusing on historical research throughout this class, and I encourage the students to choose from any of a variety topics that interest them. I want them to walk away more knowledgeable on a topic that intrigues them. On top of that, we will build upon writing skills that will be necessary if the student is interested in pursuing history or writing at a collegiate or AP level. By the end of the workshop I hope each student can walk away with a piece of well constructed research that they can be proud of. This class will also provide an excellent foundation for any future history courses.
No live classes—view lessons on YOUR schedule. In general, expect 1.5-2.5 hours to work through the lesson plan each week, and an additional 2-5 hours working on assignments (it really depends what assignment your child chooses to do and how they manage their time). For classes with two levels, the material is the same for both—the depth of the assignments differs. Younger students should usually be placed in Level 1. Older students, or younger students who want more of a challenge, should be placed in Level 2.
Each lesson consists of a fully narrated PowerPoint presentation with images and videos to enhance the topics. Students will have access to our learning management system, Canvas, for viewing their lesson, printing worksheets, taking quizzes, viewing/submitting assignments, participating in discussions, and viewing grades/feedback. Read more details about class format.
Week 1: Topic
The first week will be spent choosing a topic. We will cover some popular periods in historical writing and some of the academic work that has been done on them. From there we will discuss the steps in formulating an academic topic for research. This includes making a topic concise enough to fit the amount of time and length of the paper. It will conclude with beginning to formulate a working argument to lead into the research.
Week 2: Source Work
Week two will start the research into the topic that the student chose in the first week. We will learning how to work with primary and secondary sources. These sources make up the backbone of all historical research. Much of this week will be focused on working with a variety of sources from across the history of the world. The source work will then be applied to their topic, and they will have the chance to work with their own sources. We will also work on formulating a thesis out of their argument from week one.
Week 3: Writing an Effective Paper
While this week specifically mentions writing, just assume writing is a blanket statement for however the student presents their research. This week will focus on taking the students’ evidence from the sources and applying it to their arguments. Then we will focus on building effective introductions and conclusions, as well as structuring their evidence and arguments into effective historical writing. This week will conclude with the students developing a working introduction to their research and arguments.
Week 4: Peer Editing and Finalizing Research
The final week is a focus on the process of peer review and turning a rough draft of research into a polished piece of academic writing. This week will be highly interactive between the students, and everyone is highly encouraged to participate. Over the last few weeks the course is open, we will work on polishing their research. Their finished piece of research will be turned in on the last day of the workshop.
- Schedule Oct 3 - Dec 12
- Activities History
- Lessons 4
- Suggested Ages 13-17