Abstract 5- Volume 3, Number 3, Winter 2008

Social Studies Research and Practice

Volume 3, Number 3, Winter 2008



Energizing the History Classroom: Historical Narrative Inquiry and Historical Empathy

Sherri Rae Colby

Texas A&M University, Commerce


The article presents a historical narrative model designed to encourage analytical thinking. My historical narrative inquiry model (a) teaches procedural knowledge (the process of “doing” history); (b) enhances interpretative skills; (c) cultivates historical perspectives based upon evidentiary history; and (d) encourages student authorship of historical narratives. The instructional model emphasizes small- and large-group activities, including oral presentations, discussions about primary documents, and considerations relative to the creation of written history. Students generate their own historical narratives in order to articulate their perspectives. The purpose of the model is to facilitate students’ historical understandings by developing more empathetic perceptions of the people of the past.

Download article as PDF

About the Author(s)…

Sherri Colby completed her Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction with an emphasis in history education from the University of North Texas. She is an assistant professor in curriculum and instruction works with prospective secondary teachers. In her spare time, she enjoys culinary arts and dog agility.

Primary contact mailing address: Texas A&M University-Commerce, Curriculum and Instruction, P.O. Box 3011, Commerce, TX 75429-3011; phone: (903) 866-5669; email: Sheri_Colby@tamu-commerce.edu