The inspiration for the "Close Reading" assignment came from the "Understanding Lincoln" course taught by Matthew Pinsker. A "Close Read" involves considerable analysis in which a primary document is explained and understood by considering:
  • the context surrounding the document
  • how historians interpret the document

TEDEd version -click: "Think" for multiple choice questions, "Dig Deeper" for further information, and "Discuss" for an opportunity to answer a followup question.

Lincoln's First Inaugural Address--Students will be exposed to components of a good Close Reading during the Civil War Unit. In class discuss the following questions and aspects necessary when conducting a Close Reading.

Guiding Questions:
  1. Identify Lincoln's fundamental "premise" as explored at the beginning of the Address.
  2. What does Lincoln suggest to do about the Southern Succession?
  3. What does Lincoln believe is the central "bulwark" of American freedom?
  4. Who or what does Lincoln say will ultimately get to decide if there is war?
  5. How does Lincoln close his address?
Students will be asked to create a TEDED Quiz to accompany other Close Readings from Matthew Pinsker's House Divided Project.

Following is a playlist of acceptable topics: (click playlist upper left hand corner)

Close Readings "Beyond" the Civil War Unit
Second semester students will be assigned a primary document that they will analyze and present to the class.

  • Use ICEAGE to analyze your understanding of assigned document
  • Discuss the context surrounding the document
  • Discuss how historians interpret the document
  • Plan a method by which you will convey your findings to your peers and attain approval from your teacher
    • Blendspace, Wikispace, Prezi, Educreations, in-class presentation,