Tuesday, August 11, 2009

National History Day

What is National History Day?

National History Day (NHD) is a highly regarded academic organization for all students in grades 6-12. (public, private and homeschoolers)

Each year, more than half a million students, encouraged by thousands of teachers nationwide participate in the NHD contest. Students choose historical topics related to a theme and conduct extensive primary and secondary research through libraries, archives, museums, oral history interviews and historic sites. After analyzing and interpreting their sources and drawing conclusions about their topics’ significance in history, students present their work in original papers, websites, exhibits, performances and documentaries. These products are entered into competitions in the spring at local, state and national levels where they are evaluated by professional historians and educators. The program culminates in a national competition each June held at the University of Maryland at College Park.

In addition to discovering the exciting world of the past, NHD also helps students develop the following attributes that are critical for future success:
  • critical thinking and problem-solving skills
  • research and reading skills
  • oral and written communication and presentation skills
  • self esteem and confidence
  • a sense of responsibility for and involvement in the democratic process

Here is a video introduction to National History Day from the History Channel.

National History Day gives monetary awards in addition to medals to the top three national winners in each category.

  • Gold medalists receive $1,000*
  • Silver medalists receive $500
  • Bronze medalists receive $250

National History Day also recognizes one Outstanding State Entry from each state in the junior and senior divisions.

**The gold medal winning projects in the senior division individual and group documentary categories receive The History Channel Award of $5,000 in place of the National History Day $1,000 prize.

The 2009-2010 NHD theme is Innovation in History: Impact and Change.

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