Community reviews for Zoom In!

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Great way for the students to be active learners!

I liked that this tool helped the students to be active learners. It is not simply a click through seminar, it helps them to understand primary and secondary sources better while they write to further learn the knowledge gained. There will be various check points throughout readings to help students identify what they should be paying attention to. Teachers can use interactive rubrics to give feedback on their students notes and writing exercises that will help the students get better and better. Overall, this is a great website to help students learn and take an active role in their own learning.
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Great Writing Tool for History

I was impressed with the way in which the tool can be used to scaffold every aspect of a DBQ essay. The students were able to use close reading to analyze the documents, with guiding questions at each step. The interactive format allowed them to save notes which they could then use on their final essay. Not only did this tool help them to look more critically at the content, it also helped them appreciate and internalize the process. Excellent tool!
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A detailed timeline of important social studies movements - a great teacher resource

I love this as a resource but it may be a dense teaching tool. There is so much information so it may take time to get through all of it. It may be amazing support for an existing curriculum or provide a guideline for new teachers.
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Zoom In: Enhance your lesson

The students didn't particularly follow the website well. However, I believe this tool is best served by a teacher taking this resource and making it their own. The students were engaged and really enjoyed seeing documents about certain events. My favorite thing about the website is the endless amount of information about certain subjects. As a teacher my main complaint the lessons are very specific about specific subjects. If you are teaching that particular content it works really well for you. But I wish there was more generalized information ie. WWI, Industrial Revolution, etc.
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Want your students to think like historians? Try Zoom In

Once you have set up your class on Zoom In, you are ready to go. The lessons and units are complete, each one containing whole lessons (materials, standards, objectives, hook, context, etc.). The most important thing Zoom In contains, however, is excellent primary source documents. In fact, the units are based on the primary sources and push students to 'think like a historian' (to borrow a phrase from the recent Graphite campaign). This is not simple question and answer stuff, but instead it promotes reflection and discussion. If I were an administrator, I would love Zoom In and be nudging my teachers towards using it. Some teachers are already constructing learning experiences in this way, but others struggle to do it. Zoom In has created an inquiry-based learning experience that requires students to engage with and analyse historical issues and they have made it available to all teachers for free. I tend to want to design my own 'stuff', but if we were studying westward expansion, I wouldn't dream of passing up their lesson on the Indian Removal Act. The only drawback? At this point, Zoom In only has lessons in US History. That said, those US History lessons range from civil rights and First Nations people to the Constitution and foreign policy.
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Game Changer for Historical Thinking!

The guiding questions are great! Students have to research, find, and formulate their answers based on the documents. Many of my students are surprised that they could actually write as much as they did when it all came together at the end of the lesson. I love this process, because I can keep track each student and see what they have accomplished and give feedback on each section if needed. I like for the students to have some independence while completing their research and this provides for that opportunity. When I asked the students their opinion on this process, they overwhelmingly said that they preferred this style of lesson as compared to the lecture types that they often get. This works wonderfully in a PBL classroom too!
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Outstanding lesson about the conflicting perspectives regarding early 20th century immigration--based on a political cartoon, and several other documents from the era.

My students are engaged and interested in the content, thanks to the outstanding choice of documents. The Zoom In lessons promote cross-curricular collaboration--since many of the lessons explore multiple topics, time periods, and skills. I am looking forward to providing my students with more of the Zoom In lessons throughout the school year!
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