VHM2: Integrating Literacy and History Instruction through Technology
The Virtual History Museum is a web-based history-learning environment designed to promote the historical understanding of all students and offer cognitive supports that will enable full participation and success for students all students in diverse classrooms. The Virtual History Museum (VHM) enables a teacher or student, who serves as a curator, to develop an exhibit about a historical topic. Exhibits include activities that help viewers in the VHM investigate the exhibit and then communicate to others the results of their investigation. The VHM includes features to support students with disabilities.
We are currently expanding the VHM into the VHM2. In this second generation of the project, we are integrating literacy instruction into history classrooms through the addition of new VHM features. In 2010-2011, we will develop and evaluate two strands of domain-specific literacy strategies for the history classroom: (a) interpreting evidence, and (b) communicating conclusions. The Virtual History Museum (VHM) will be used to provide both the historical content and the instruction that students will use to learn these strategies. In 2011-2012, we will develop a series of internet-based history lessons that support the teaching and use of those strategies and a library of YouTube-like video clips in which middle and high-school student actors teach each strategy to their peers along with teacher professional development materials.
You can continue to use the VHM as all these developments are underway. Check back frequently to see what we've added to the site.
The VHM runs in Firefox, Internet Explorer, Safari, and Google Chrome browsers. However, we recommend that you use VHM with the Firefox Browser. Text-to-speech tools, available with Firefox for free, should enable you to read any text in the VHM. We recommend SpeakingFox for the Mac and FoxVox for Windows. The VHM operates more effectively with a high speed internet connection.
If you haven't used the VHM before, you can become a guest of the VHM by clicking on the Register button and then filling in the requested information. If you registered for the VHM more than two years ago, please re-register.
This project is supported by Steppingstones Grant #H327A100084 from the United States Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs. Opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of the Office of Special Education Programs.
Cynthia M. Okolo
Carol Sue Englert
Research and Development Team: