You are here:

Exploring the Past with 21st-Century Tools


Social Studies and the Young Learner Volume 21, Number 4, ISSN 1056-0300


Elementary school teachers and students in the U.S. are engaging with the past in new ways. Teachers send students on guided online searches for images. Students explore interactive timelines, create podcasts based on oral history interviews with family members, and make digital video projects with historical photographs and video clips. A host of online tools, such as Voicethread, are designed to help students think through their ideas and share them with fellow students, collaboratively analyzing and commenting on primary sources using voice, text, or graphics. Young learners are curious and enthusiastic about the past and about using technology. Putting the two together can create an open and exciting educational environment, but it requires preparation and planning. There is more to do than having students passively "gaze at webpages." Teaching and modeling the core values of social studies involves taking information and creating an educational environment that fosters the development of knowledge. This article discusses the use of technology to teach social studies concepts in authentic and relevant ways and to assist young learners to begin thinking like historians. (Contains 25 notes.)


Schrum, K. & Schrum, L. (2009). Exploring the Past with 21st-Century Tools. Social Studies and the Young Learner, 21(4), 24-27. Retrieved November 15, 2019 from .

This record was imported from ERIC on April 19, 2013. [Original Record]

ERIC is sponsored by the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) of the U.S. Department of Education.

Copyright for this record is held by the content creator. For more details see ERIC's copyright policy.


Cited By

View References & Citations Map

These links are based on references which have been extracted automatically and may have some errors. If you see a mistake, please contact