Social Studies

Primary Source of the Month: March

One of the iconic images of the Iditarod is the Burled Arch that stands at the end of the epic journey the teams take across the state of Alaska. But, did you know the current Burled Arch is actually the second arch in Iditarod History? Using the Source With Students: Display the historic photo above …

Primary Source of the Month: January

Last month, we looked at the use of the Iditarod Trail as a mail trail by investigating trail mail. This month, we turn our focus to the use of the Iditarod Trail during the Gold Rush Days. The vault of the Miners and Merchants Bank is one of the few structures still standing in Iditarod …

Going North – The Rush Is On!

In September of 1898, the “Three Lucky Swedes” discovered gold on Anvil Creek, founded the Nome Mining District, and started a new rush to the North.  By 1898, Nome had a population of 10,000, many of whom had arrived for the Klondike Gold Rush.  When gold was discovered on the beaches of Nome, the rush …

“Sharing Our Stories” From Student Journalists in Takotna, Alaska

Sharing Our Story from Student Journalists attending Takotna Community School, Takotna, AK Mrs. Smith’s Class Starting the School Day My name is Elijah, am nine years old, and I am in third grade in Takotna, Alaska. I live on Mile 329 of the Iditarod Trail. My job the first week of school was to lead …

Virtual Trail Journey – Ophir at Mile 352

BOO!  Being that the next two checkpoints on the trail are located in GHOST TOWNS, my story should begin with a ghostly greeting!  So, what’s a ghost town?  It’s a deserted town.  The residents have left usually because their jobs no longer exist or because of natural disasters, fires or wars.  That’s exactly the case …

Neither Rain, Sleet, Nor Snow The Mail Must Go

“Always striving to find ways to get the trail recognized, another idea was hatched at one of the many meetings.  The Iditarod Trail was a mail trail, so why not have each musher carry mail?  An arrangement was made with the U.S. Postal Service to carry cachets, packets of letters, over the Iditarod to Nome.  …

Glogster – The Iditarod, Machu Picchu, and Denali

Many teachers always comment that they want to incorporate the Iditarod all year, but they don’t know how.  As a result, the Iditarod makes it into their classroom for a small amount of time.  It is very possible to teach the Iditarod year round while still teaching your other curriculum. My students are currently studying …

Primary Source of the Month: October

Our Virtual Fall Conference this month is focused on technology as teachers around the world are pushing tech to its limits dealing with distance, hybrid, and in person learning, sometimes all at the same time! Technology used by fans, students, and teachers to follow the race has certainly grown and changed over the years. Today, …

Primary Source of the Month: September

In August, the hashtags #womenshistory and #Beyondthe19th were trending. Here’s a little bit of Iditarod #womenshistory for you and your students! Share the primary source with the students and give them some time to examine it on their own. This source is featured in the Iditarod On-Line Museum (click the photo for a larger image). …

Investigating the Surface of the Iditarod Trail: STEM/Science Focus

Investigating the Surface of the Iditarod Trail by Kelly Shusko, Colonial School District, Delaware *This lesson was created for Kindergarten students but is applicable for other grade levels. Standards and Application of lesson: Stem/Science/Social Studies- Geography, Social Emotional Learning The purpose of this lesson is to have students plan and carry out an investigation about …