Students can use this word bank to show historical analysis while writing thematic and document-based question essays or other types of writing in history class. These words and phrases can be used by student writers to help them answer the question, "So What?" Why does this fact or example matter? What is the significance of this information?
This resource may be introduced as part of a mini-lesson to get students writing about the significance of an event they have studied in class. For example, if students have been studying the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire, they may be asked to do a quick write about the significance of the event using at least two words or phrases from the handout in their response.
The handout can also be used as a guide to help students in a class discussion, to analyze primary and secondary sources or to write a homework journal.
Teachers may also opt to print a poster size version of the handout that may serve as a word wall to be referenced throughout the year.
With regards to state exams, students are often blocked from earning a higher essay score because they include more description of events rather than historical analysis. Frequent use of this handout may help students to increase the amount of analysis in their writing, thereby increasing their score on the state rubric.