Resources for Educators


Seal of the Pennsylvania Society for Promoting the Abolition of Slavery, circa 1800 (Digital Library)

Looking for ideas on how to use this material in the classroom?

The Historical Society of Pennsylvania is committed to working with teachers to help students learn American history and historical thinking skills. HSP offers unit plans aligned to Pennsylvania State Standards and other teacher resources, and our staff stands ready to aid students in research and assist them in understanding the past and its meaning to their lives today and in the future. Learn more.

Unit plans link to lesson plans that fit class periods. Each lesson includes learning objectives, vocabulary, and background material for students and teachers as well as primary sources from our collection. Big Ideas, Essential Questions, Concepts and Competencies are outlined for you.

Find a full list of HSP teacher resources here. Follow HSP's Educators Blog for the latest news for those interested in history education, including events, resources, and teaching tips.

How to Use this Site

A brief overview explains how to navigate this digital history site, how to interpret the different font styles in the document transcriptions, and how to search for different kinds of content. Read more.

Unit Plans

Using Primary Sources in the Classroom

From Fugitive Slaves to Free Americans

The Pennsylvania Abolition Society and the Free Black Community

Eusebius Barnard House Reenactment

In the video below, reenactors from the Kennett Underground Railroad Center discuss the importance of the stories they interpret and how they connected with the men and women they portray.