Class Tech Tips: Zoom In: 18 Free History Lessons with Primary Sources

Class Tech Tips: Zoom In: 18 Free History Lessons with Primary Sources

The Zoom In onlineplatform features 18 skill-focused, document-rich lessons that address every era of U.S. history. Each interactive inquiry engages students in reading documents closely, gathering evidence, and writing an argumentative or explanatory essay.

Rich primary and secondary texts are at the core of Zoom In lessons, giving voice to multiple perspectives on key moments in U.S. history. Speeches, letters, political cartoons, oral histories, audio recordings, photographs and essays by historians — all have been adapted to balance authenticity and challenge with accessibility for middle and high school readers.

Interactive writing templates help scaffold student writing, using interactive outlines, tips, and sentence starters. Teachers can differentiate instruction by assigning individual students either a high or low level of writing support. The tool’s dashboard allows teachers to monitor students’ progress and to assess student notes and writing using standards-based rubrics.

Zoom In is completely free – visit this website to learn more!

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Monica Burns is a fifth grade teacher in a 1:1 iPad classroom. Visit her website at for creative education technology tips and technology lesson plans aligned to the Common Core Standards.