For Teachers

The 2020 Maryland History Day contest will be held digitally. Visit the contest website for more information.

The National History Day program provides teachers with an innovative teaching tool that instills important skills in a fun and engaging format.

History Day requires students to do the job of a historical detective. Participants must delve into primary sources, develop original historical conclusions, and present their work in a creative form. In short, National History Day is designed to revolutionize the teaching and learning of history. It also aligns with Common Core Standards.

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  • Does NHD Work?

    National History Day conducted a national evaluation study to answer that very question! Some of the findings from the study include:

    • NHD students outperform their non-NHD peers on state standardized tests, not only in social studies, but in reading, science and math as well.
    • NHD students are better writers, who write with a purpose and real voice, and marshal solid evidence to support their point of view.
    • NHD students are critical thinkers who can digest, analyze and synthesize information.
    • NHD students learn 21st century skills. They learn how to collaborate with team members, talk to experts, manage their time and persevere.
    • NHD has a positive impact among students whose interests in academic subjects may wane in high school.

  • Teacher Resources

    Teacher Packet

    Maryland History Day produces a packet of teacher resources that you can use in your classroom! From overview to lesson plans, it’s all available through the Google Drive button below. 

    Google Drive

    Class Visits and Professional Development

    Want to bring in our outreach professionals to your classroom? Looking for continuing education credits? Check out the Outreach and Professional Development page.

    Sign Up for our Teaching with Primary Sources course! 
    This 3 CPD credit online Thinkport course is an in-depth look at how to use the Maryland History Day program to increase student analysis skills. Teachers will produce a History Day project themselves, while creating a master plan for using Maryland History Day in their own classrooms.                                   Sign Up Here


    Exhibit BoardsExhibit Board

    Maryland History Day teachers can now purchase 48″ tall exhibit boards online through our partner, Box Man Inc. Exhibit boards can also be purchased in bulk (sets of ten). The boards come in white or black, with or without the title panel. With each purchase of an exhibit board, Box Man will donate $1 to the Maryland History Day program.

  • NHD Resources


     National History Day Online Courses

    National History Day has a full range of online graduate courses for middle and high school educators who want to implement our project-based curriculum into their classrooms using the framework of the National History Day Contest.

    All National History Day courses provide practical advice as well as pedagogical strategies.

    Along with creating classroom-ready materials customized to the needs of their students, participants also have the options of earning a certificate of professional development hours or (for an additional cost) graduate credit from the University of San Diego.

     Summer Institutes

    The Memorializing the Fallen and the Understanding Sacrifice programs both emphasize experiential learning through travel and primary source research.

       Webinars And Videos

    NHD Produces a new webinar for the theme each year, which requires pre-registration. They also hold webinars for category selection.

     NEH Ask an Expert Series

    The Ask an NEH Expert Series highlights leaders in the field of historical research who can offer valuable expertise to students. These are arranged by category, so that students can find information that pertains to them.

  • Teacher FAQs

    How do I fit History Day into my classroom schedule?

    We believe that History Day won’t detract from your curriculum but will be a way to teach your curriculum. Use history day to teach rimary source analysis, research skills, and to get your students interested and invested in different time periods and topics. To plan out your year, we ave a number of sample timelines that you can use.

    Timeline 1      Timeline 2


    How do I teach annotated bibliographies?

    Thinkport leaning modules include training on annotated bibliographies, as well as primary and secondary sources and a number of other topics. Find the full list of modules here. 


Teacher Testimonials

  • “The thing that had the most impact were the skills that I got from this project. I developed better hunting skills in terms of looking for reliable sources and I also learned to work hard and not procrastinate to achieve something great.”

    Maryland History Day student participant
  • I’ve loved judging! It’s exciting to see the passion the middle schoolers have put in their projects. I hope that my critiques have helped strive for excellence throughout their lives.

    Dee Krasnansky, Maryland History Day Judge
  • “The part of History Day that had the most impact on me was seeing all the other entries and entry categories. It was really inspiring to see so many different people of history honored for their leadership and legacy as that was this years theme. You forget that the whole world has a history and there are so many different people and leaders who make up that history. The fact that this day brings together all of us students, our imaginations, our creativity, research skills, and history really reminds you how much of us would be lost if we didn’t remember those who made an impact.”

    ​Maryland History Day student participant
  • “Maryland History Day challenged my daughter to go deeper, deeper in research analysis and presentation. It took her to a whole new level academically.”

    ​Maryland History Day parent
  • “I think the continual process of improving her research and presentation through the various levels of competition has been incredibly valuable. It has caused her to dig deeper in her research and build upon and refine her work and presentation.”

    ​Maryland History Day parent
  • “MHD illustrated the applicability of the study of history to contemporary issues and current events. It was very motivating to converse with the students about their historical topic and observe how they applied it to current events and their own life circumstances.”

    ​Maryland History Day parent
  • “History Day inspired me to become deeply invested in historical topics which I never thought I’d enjoy. It is an amazing experience that has the ability to make learning fun for everyone, no matter what you’re interested in.”

    Addie Skillman, National History Day Gold Winner
  • “My students became more competent researchers, and took ownership of their work. They had total free reign to choose their topic, direct their research, and create their final project.”

    ​Maryland History Day 2015 Teacher
  • “The students are now far more prepared for the high level of scholarship and achievement that will be expected of them in future years. MHD also elevated many other skills too. These include public speaking, the use of technology, learning to collaborate.”

    ​Maryland History Day teacher
  • “I had never done anything like this before so it was a totally new experience to write a paper, be interviewed, and defend my positions. I now really know how to do research and it has improved my writing skills.”

    ​Maryland History Day student
  • “My students went deeper with primary and secondary sources than ever before. They used critical thinking skills and applied the transfer goals and essential questions on a deeper level than they could have in class. It challenged them to think deeper and defend their findings.”

    Maryland History Day 2019 Teacher
  • “By using a variety of sources, I was able to get angles on my topic that I wasn’t able to before. Also, I learned so much about a topic near and dear to my heart that will enrich my learning later in life.”

    Maryland History Day 2015 Student
  • “We were very impressed with the depth of research all the students did for their History Day projects. It was fun to see them interacting with each other during the competition and events.”

    Lori and Josh Skillman, History Day Parents
  • “The excitement of the research was wonderful for my students’ academic progress. They now feel capable of doing any research paper that may be assigned in college!”

    Maryland History Day 2019 Teacher
  • “History Day has taught men how to interpret and effective use primary sources in my writing to create and support claims. Now I am much more likely to explore databases, go to libraries, and explore further external sources for credible and effective sources.”

    Maryland History Day 2019 Student
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Maryland Humanities is a statewide, educational nonprofit organization that creates and supports educational experiences in the humanities that inspire all Marylanders to embrace lifelong learning, exchange ideas openly, and enrich their communities.
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Baltimore, Maryland 21201-4565
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