Monday, July 2, 2012

Website Spotlight: American Journeys

Website URL:

Introductory Note:

Welcome to one in a series of posts which spotlight quality websites that I use with my U.S. History survey course students at Azusa Pacific University to enrich the regular material in our learning modules.

In this post, I limit myself to those specific aspects of the website which I find fit particularly well within our face-to-face class sessions (each student is required to bring a laptop to class) or as the basis for the students' regularly-assigned written reactions.


Material on this website was initially designed to help students prepare for 2002 National History Day.

I ask the students to work through the following links:

I. Excellent "Help" page

II. Let's take an example of how to work with any given document:

1. Go to the "Find a Document" tab at the top of the screen:

This screen shows all the documents (listed in chronological order) contained on the American Journeys website.

2. For our example, let's choose the 1493 "Letter of Christopher Columbus to Ferdinand and Isabella."

Click on the AJ (American Journeys) number, AJ-064, for that particular document.

3. This step takes you to the AJ-604 Document page.

4. We can click on "Read This Document" to pull up the document itself.

5. But for me, the most exciting part of this website is the "Read Background" material for each document.

Click on "Read Background" for AJ-604.

Notice all the great information on this screen:

a. Author Note
b. Event(s) pertinent to the specific document
c. Document Note
d. Other Internet or Reference Sources

III. Choosing a Topic

IV. Geography

V. Interpretation: How Could They Think That? The Problem of Worldview

VI. Sensitive Content

~~For a review of this website: (National History Education Clearinghouse)

Concluding Note:

I hope you will use this blog post in conjunction with both the modules on my Learning Professor wiki and the numerous other posts in my Website Spotlight series.

1. The website spotlighted in this post fits mostly within the following U.S. History survey course module on the wiki:

2. The other blog posts in my Website Spotlight series--chronologically displayed by U.S. History survey course module-- can be found on this wiki page: 


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