Placed-based Learning:
Community Connections

reenactorGet students involved in authentic learning through developing community connections. Start by getting to know your own community, then reach out and share with others.

US History Resources


History Resources

Primary Sources

General Sources

Mississippi River Sources

Teaching with Primary Documents

Student Community Projects

The following materials focus on student projects related to communities.

Guardians of Freedom - Oral History Project

Contests and Collections

Mississippi River Projects

Oral History Projects

42explore: Oral History

Oral History Projects

Environmental Events

Exploring the history of a community can be an overwhelming task. It's sometimes helpful to focus on key events.

From tornadoes and flood to earthquakes and heatwaves, life along the Mississippi has always been a hazardous place to live. Explore ways to get students involved with understanding the impact of environmental events on their community.

Activity Ideas

  • Separate the fact from fiction of the event(s)
  • Trace the history of an environmental event (i.e., floods, earthquakes) in your area.
  • Compare primary source accounts.
  • Compare "articles" written later for factual information.
  • Look for contradictory information.
  • Compare a particular event with other events (i.e., floods, tornadoes, earthquakes).
  • Collect interviews regarding a particular event.
  • Reconstruct an event.
  • Speculate on a future environmental event.
  • Create a newsletter representing a particular time such as December 17, 1811.
  • Create a presentation providing localized preparation information.
  • Need photographs? Go to NOAA Photo Library.

Mississippi River Earthquakes

The Mississippi River runs along a major fault called New Madrid. Although it's been nearly 200 years since the last major earthquake many scientists speculate that eventually another quake will come to the area.

WebQuests and Student Activity Ideas

Internet Resources

Mississippi Waters and Floods

Explore famous floods in your area such as the Flood of 1993.

Mississippi River Tornadoes

Explore famous tornadoes in your area such as the tornadoes of March 18, 1925.

Brainstorm other significant environmental events in the history of your community. Compare these events with other communities.

Create an assignment involving students in the production of a newsletter related to an environment event such as a particular date, preparation, reflections.

Then and Now

Developing "Then and Now" projects are a great way to do comparisons.


Created by Annette Lamb, 6/04.