Tuesday, August 16, 2016

5 Reasons to Use Local Interest Books with Your American History Curriculum

This post, by Jack Joseph at Arcadia Publishing, explains why using books of local interest with your history curriculum will be a nice supplement to bring your history study to life.  Arcadia Publishing is having a sale in August, so check it out.

Here in the age of information, it’s not surprising that people are becoming more aware in general. For instance, they not only want to know what’s on their plate, but where it comes from and how it was prepared. They are increasingly curious about how things work and why society is the way it is.

They are more interested than ever before in exploring cultures, locations, and concepts above and beyond what they already know.

Local interest literature can be a valuable tool when it comes to satisfying your interest in the history of the country you live in. It can help you explore American society on an entirely new level as well.

 Here are just a few of the questions that can be answered by including regional and local interest books into your history studies.

“What was it really like to be an immigrant in early America?”

Every American is aware of the fact that immigrants from all over the world are a huge part of our history as a nation. However, most have only a basic understanding of what that really means. They are familiar with the general information they were presented with in history class when they were young, but not much else. 

Local interest literature explores American history from a more intimate perspective, so readers are treated to a much more detailed and interesting look at what the immigrant experience was really like. You can explore the personal backstories of German, Italian, Swedish, or Mexican immigrants from all over the country. You can discover the histories of some of America’s most important ethnic neighborhoods. You can even trace immigrant influence on  sports, regional cuisine, American industry, and more.

“How did my favorite restaurant/shopping/entertainment brand become a household name?”

Most of us are so familiar with the big brand names that are a common part of the American social experience, that we can’t even remember when we first heard of them. We don’t really remember the first time we walked through the front door of a Macy’s or the first time we heard of McDonald’s hamburgers, because they have been a part of life for most of us right from day one. 

However, that doesn't mean we never get curious about how things came to be.

Regional interest books written by local experts can introduce readers to many topics on a deeper level, including the history of great American brand names. Learn about the amazing minds behind some of our culture’s most legendary corporations. Discover the humble beginnings of America’s most important department stores, tech brands, and restaurant chains. Even explore the rise and fall of past greats in stunning detail.

“What are the backstories behind my favorite regional landmarks?”

We’re all familiar with American landmarks like the Golden Gate Bridge or the Empire State Building. Many of us have even had the privilege of visiting some of these historic icons. However, even if you were taught the bare essentials of how these landmarks came to be, it’s important to realize that – as is often the case with history – there is always so much more to the story.

Local interest books on niche topics can treat you to the intimate details you don’t typically hear about in ordinary history books or classes. Many options contain beautiful historic photographs that allow you to see the process of how certain landmarks came to be from beginning to end.

 Local interest literature doesn’t just cover world renowned landmarks everyone is aware of, either. They can cover smaller local landmarks from all over the nation as well, including the ones in your own hometown.

“Which American cities are considered to be the most haunted and why?”

Whether we admit it or not, some of us are suckers for a really good ghost story. Ghost stories remind us of great times spent with childhood friends at slumber parties or sitting around campfires. As adults, ghost stories allow us to recapture a bit of that childlike imagination and wonder about the world around us. (Why do you think most history networks feature at least one show on ghost hunting or haunted history?)

The fact of the matter is ghost stories really are a part of our history as Americans and regional interest books can introduce you to them on an entirely new level. Find out which American cities are the most haunted and discover the fascinating backstories behind those hauntings. Read firsthand accounts and marvel at historic photography of the best locations. Even discover whether your own town has a haunted history of its own.

“Why is ______ considered to be such an important part of American culture?”

American history is full of people, places, and concepts that everyone is familiar with. However, not everyone knows why they are considered so important. This goes for events, industries, landmarks, and more. Regional interest literature is a genre designed to treat readers to an inside look at the historical significance of many things, big or small. 

Learn how your hometown was established, or explore the backstories of your favorite neighborhoods and local landmarks. Get to know the histories of the immigrant communities in your region. Explore each of America’s national parks, along with each of the features that makes them unique. Get to know absolutely anything about America or the American people that strikes your fancy, on an intimate and fascinating new basis.

The key to making sure your study of regional history is as enriching as you’d like it to be is to choose the right publisher to trust. Arcadia Publishing is home to one of the country’s largest, most comprehensive collections of quality regional interest books. Explore over 13,000 volumes written by local experts on numerous subjects, including but not limited to aviation, Native American culture, sports, industry, and more. You’re sure to be glad you did.

About the author: Jack Joseph serves as the e-commerce manager for Arcadia Publishing and The History Press. Jack oversees all direct to consumer business initiatives, e-book sales and web based projects from the Mt.Pleasant, South Carolina headquarters.Jack joined Arcadia Publishing in 2013, and has served various roles in sales and marketing.He enjoys anything outdoors, especially if it involves the water. 

Monday, August 8, 2016

Hands On History Supplement


Many students learn better when their hands are busy.  Popular history curricula often includes hands on activities.

You can create your own hands on activities or purchase supplements.  

A nice addition for a study of American History is the God Bless America coloring book by Multnomah.

Click the link above to see examples of the coloring pages.  You will notice that the pages are not complicated, but are classy, with quotes from American history.

On the back of each coloring page is information about the quote and who said it.  The book covers a variety of people and quotes: Founding Fathers, historic documents, patriotic songs, or other American heroes (astronauts, generals,etc).

Even though it is called an 'adult' coloring book, I know it would be great for students of a variety of grade levels.  

In the back of the book is a link to a playlist to set the mood as well as a quiz to see what your student learned from the book.

This coloring book could be for students who like to be doing something during read aloud time or as a supplement to reinforce a time period or person being studied.

The pages are nice and thick, with images that your student will love.  You might even find yourself tempted to color a page.  Go ahead and indulge your creativity!

What are your favorite history supplements?

I received this book from Blogging for Books for my honest review.
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