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Getting Started

Welcome to Consider the Source Online!

Historical thinking does not happen by simply handing students historical documents. They must be taught to identify, understand, analyze, assess, and evaluate sources of information. 

Consider the Source Online brings the historical records and methods for teaching students how to think historically to you, the educator. With this resource, educators can:

Learn how to use historical records in your classroom

This online tutorial will walk you through the process of finding and using primary sources. You will learn how to choose historical records to teach students the skills involved in historical thinking and how those records support your existing classroom curriculum. 

Browse Historical Records

Access thousands of historical records from the New York State Archives and local repositories throughout New York State. Browse by historical era or popular topics. You can also search by keyword. 

Access Learning Activities

Use or modify learning activities created by educators throughout New York State and aligned to the New York State Social Studies Framework. 

Build & Share Engaging Lessons for Students

Create new lessons using the primary sources available through the website or upload new images to use in your lessons. Save your lessons to your private account or choose to publish them making them available to all registered users. Visit the How to Create an Activity page to learn about the types of activities available and how to create your own using the online tools. Activity types available include: 

  • Interpreting the EvidenceComparison and Contextualization
  • Chronological Reasoning and Causation
  • Evaluating the Evidence
  • Geographic Reasoning

Register for a free account.

To modify existing lessons, create new lessons, and assign lessons to your students directly through the website you must register for a free account.