Teacher Center

Indiana Humanities is proud to support Indiana teachers and their students by providing lesson plan ideas and professional development opportunities.


Lesson Plan Ideas

Spirit of Competition Lesson Plans

Teacher toolkits developed by Indiana Humanities include resources and lesson plans for teachers on a variety of subjects like civility, rivalry, innovation, passion and failure and for a variety of themes, such as Black History Month or Women’s History Month.

Topics include staging a debate, writing your rival, learning about entrepreneurs like Madam C.J. Walker, inventors like Fort Wayne’s teen phenom Philo Farnsworth, and how to overcome obstacles like Colonel Eli Lilly.

Learn more at SpiritofCompetition.org.


Visit Indiana: 4th Grade Social Studies Curriculum

Fourth-grade teachers in Indiana have a new resource for helping students learn about the Hoosier state. The six-week course, based on the State of Indiana education standards, incorporates critical thinking and problem solving into the Indiana history curriculum.

From resources to activities, teachers will find a complete curriculum to teach Indiana history while integrating a variety of educational disciplines. Students will hone various skills while they learn about all the great places they can visit in their home state. Download the complete kit or individual resources, here.


What So Proudly We Hail

A one-stop source for free, literary-based curricula to aid in the classroom instruction of American history, civics, social studies, and language arts. Explore this site to find creative lesson plans, video seminars, primary resources, and much more.

The Curriculum link will lead you to “The Meaning of America” discussion guides and model seminars, the “The American Calendar” e-book collection, and the “Songs for Free Men and Women” compilation.

The site also includes a catalog of great American short stories, speeches, study guides, discussion videos, author biographies, and primary texts. Learn more.


Professional Development Opportunities

Teaching Teachers to Teach Vonnegut
July 14-18 | FREE

At the 2014 Teaching Teachers to Teach Vonnegut workshop, high school teachers and librarians will hear from Vonnegut scholars on how to introduce one of our nation’s best authors to young people. And you’ll earn professional development credits for each hour you attend. Rodney Allen, PhD, Vonnegut scholar and author of  Conversations with Kurt Vonnegut and  Understanding Kurt Vonnegut, will lead the workshop.

The goal is to give teachers information they need to effectively share Vonnegut’s work with students. Vonnegut’s writing is relevant to social issues today – environmentalism, militarism, human rights, censorship, religion’s place in civic life – and students will find his humor and insights into the human condition fascinating and challenging.

Space is limited. Contact the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library by email: teachingKV@vonnegutlibrary.org.

Arthur and Rochelle Belfer National Conference for Educators, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
July 8-10: Language Arts  |  July 11-13: Social Studies
This year, the focus will be on the new exhibit, Some Were Neighbors: Collaboration and Complicity in the Holocaust, as well as digital and media literacy through the lens of propaganda and Common Core.  Participants will focus on writing, memoirs, historical thinking, and Holocaust survivor testimony, using the Museum’s vast online offerings of primary source materials.  Participants will have time to view the Museum’s Permanent Exhibition before the Museum opens to the public and after it closes.  They will also receive free books and materials, and a voucher of $100 to be used in the Museum Shop.  A limited number of scholarships of $1,000 are available. Learn more.

One-week Teacher Workshop: Abraham Lincoln and the Forging of Modern America
Choose to attend one of two, one-week workshops (June 23-27 or July  14-18) to explore Abraham Lincoln’s life in Springfield and New Salem Village, Illinois, and the political and historical challenges he faced as President. Presenters will be outstanding Lincoln scholars drawn from universities in the St. Louis area. Learn more.

America In Class Online Seminars
These $35 seminars focus on teaching with primary sources — historical documents, literary texts, visual images, and audio material. Emphasizing critical analysis and close reading, they address the skills of the Common Core State Standards while giving teachers the opportunity to deepen their content knowledge.  Learn more.

Topics include themes such as:

The Struggle for Woman Suffrage

Teaching The Great Gatsby

The Causes of The Great Depression

The Emergence of Jim Crow


Indiana Humanities connects people, opens minds and enriches lives by creating and facilitating programs that encourage Hoosiers to think, read and talk.