Monroe County Local History Room & Museum


Census program, 7pm March 31st
“Coming to your Census: A History and Overview of the Census and its Records...
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“Lost Voices of Mariel” Traveling Exhibit on view now
In 1980, the Mariel Boatlift brought 14,000 people to the refugee compound at Fort McCoy...
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Monroe County Local History Room & Museum

History Detectives

Title: "History Detectives"

Topics: Research Methods; Primary vs. Secondary Sources
Suggested Grade Level: 4-8
Required Time: 30-45 minutes

Description: An introduction to researching and writing history. Using the analogy of detectives solving a crime, students will understand what “history” is, learn how to select a research topic, differentiate between “Primary” and “Secondary” sources, locate and evaluate sources of information, and use those resources to solve a problem.


  • Students will understand what “history” is and how it is researched and recorded
  • Students will know the difference between “Primary” and “Secondary” sources
  • Students will use primary sources to solve a problem/answer a research question
Wisconsin Model Academic Standards
Social Studies Performance Standards Related to the Program
By the end of Grade 8

B.8.1 Interpret the past using a variety of sources, such as biographies, diaries, journals, artifacts, eyewitness interviews, and other primary source materials, and evaluate the credibility of sources used

B.8.4 Explain how and why events may be interpreted differently depending upon the perspectives of participants, witnesses, reporters, and historians

Common Core State Standards for Literacy in All Subjects (6-12) Related to the Program

Grades 6-8

RH.6-8.1 Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources.

RH.6-8.2 Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of the source distinct from prior knowledge or opinions.

RH.6-8.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary specific to domains related to history/social studies.

RH.6-8.7 Integrate visual information (e.g. charts, graphs, photographs, videos, or maps) with other information in print and digital texts.

RH.6-8.8 Distinguish among fact, opinion, and reasoned judgment in a text.

RH.6-8.9 Analyze the relationship between a primary and secondary source on the same topic.

SL.6.1.b Follow rules for collegial discussions, set specific goals and deadlines, and define individual roles as needed.

SL.6.1.c. Pose and respond to specific questions with elaboration and detail by making comments that contribute to the topic, text, or issue under discussion.

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