Resources for Teachers

Getting Started or Help Along the Way

The N.C. History Day team is also available to meet online with educators and/or their students to introduce the program and to provide help with any step of the process. 

Please contact us to discuss how we can help!  There are also options available for students to participate even if their school does not. 

Benefits of National History Day

The following guide is designed to share with parents or community stakeholders on the benefits of the National History Day program.

Benefits of  NHD

N.C. Educational Standards

The following N.C. educational standards will be met by a student who participates in the National History Day program.  Additional standards, across multiple disciplines, may also be targeted depending on which topic and project category is selected.  

N.C. Educational Standards and NHD

Guides by Grade Level

The national NHD office has also created Teacher Resource Guides for specific grade levels. These helpful guides are from teachers across the country, and contain sample documents such as student assignment pages, grading rubrics, and more.

For Middle School

For High School, Part I

For High School, Part II

Other Resources

Various state affiliates, NHD partners, and the national program have developed an array of resources to help you make your students and school's program as successful as possible. We've collected a few of our favorites below.

Thinkport Research Learning Modules

Thinkport Education has created a series of self-paced online lessons that guide students step-by-step as they practice the important research skills needed to create a National History Day project. Through these brief and easy to follow lessons, students will learn to define and analyze sources, how to write a solid thesis statement, and ultimately understand how to create their projects.

Learning Modules

Ask an NEH Expert

National History Day works with the National Endowment for the Humanities to conduct the Ask an NEH Expert Series. Previous installments addressed the five National History Day categories (documentaries, exhibits, papers, performances, and websites), but the 2020 episodes focus on specific skills crucial to all NHD students, in all five NHD categories - Building an Argument, Validating Sources,  and Writing and Editing.

Ask an NEH Expert Series

Framework for Teaching

The Mississippi program affiliate has developed a guide to help teachers introduce their students to National History Day and guide their students' NHD project development. This 18-class framework offers suggestions and links to handouts.

Download the Framework

Most Recent Rule Book

A brand new Rule Book was released for use starting in the 2020-21 contest year.

Download the NEW Rule Book

 NEW Rule Book - Spanish

National History Day created a summary document to help teachers and students navigate most significant changes and clarifications in the new Rule Book vs. the previous version.  

Download the Summary of Significant Rule Changes

Along with the new rules, National History Day has also created NEW Evaluation Forms for each category.  These will be used by judges in the 2020-21 contest season.  

Download the NEW Evaluation Forms

Current Theme Book and Materials

The 2020-21 program year's annual theme is "Communication in History: The Key to Understanding."  Below you can watch a quick theme video and download the current theme book and materials that will help you and your students explore this theme. 


Download the Current Theme Book

Download the Theme Organizer Worksheet 

Download N.C. History Topic Ideas for 2021 Theme 


NHD participants within a school can enjoy one complementary NoodleTools subscription for one NHD project season. The NoodleTools online platform helps students to generate accurate bibliographies in accordance with NHD rules, evaluate sources, create and organize notecards, and archive copies of sources. Teacher mentors can view student work in progress and provide real-time feedback.

Sign-up Today

National History Day Webinars, Courses, and Books

  • Free webinars on advice for new teachers, how to use primary sources in the classroom, tips for creating historical projects, and more.
  • Online graduate courses are available through National History Day for middle and high school teachers and media coordinators who want to implement a project-based curriculum into their classrooms​.
  • A Guide to Historical Research, is one of seven books in the Making History series that take teachers step-by-step through a school year in the program, from topic selection to research presentation.

Lesson Plans, Activities, and Primary Sources

World War I

World War II: Understanding Sacrifice

Women in American History

Teaching the American Civil War in the 21st Century

U.S. History in Global Perspective