Over the last year or so, more and more folks are beginning to use social media tools to recreate history. We’ve seen the likes of the John Quincy Adams Twitter feed, Historical Tweets and Lincoln’s Facebook page as well as a much less serious version of historical figures interacting with modern online tools.
One of the latest historical media tool integrations I’ve run across is called TwHistory.
The project began in 2009 with the first Twitter reenactment of the Battle of Gettysburg over a period of several weeks. TwHistory is based on the idea that historical reenactments can take place online and have positive effects for all involved. In school settings these virtual reenactments can increase engagement while providing opportunities for students to research personal journals and other primary source documents.
There’s a couple of things to like about TwHistory. First, they have a couple of reenactments already in the can (Gettysburg and the Cuban Missile Crisis) and a current reenactment that has just started that they’re calling the 1847 Pioneer Trek. So you can jump in as a classroom teacher and start using their goodies right away.
Third, TwHistory just received a grant from the Talis Incubator for Open Education people to fund work designed to help teachers create their own TwHistory reenactments. So what do you got to lose?
The only thing you’ll need to participate is a Twitter account and a desire to actively engage your kids in historical thinking.