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Contra Costa County National History Day 2012

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About | Forms | Teachers | Students and Parents | State History Day | Calendar | Map

History Day Competition: Saturday, March, 24, 2012, Noon – 4:30 p.m.

History Day Eve: Friday, March, 23, 2012
Featured Speaker: Professor Clayborne Carson on "The Human Rights Revolution"

Oakland Museum of California
In partnership with the Alameda County Office of Education


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National History Day
Frequently-asked questions about National History Day.
Sign up, learn about this year's theme, find resources, register for a workshop and order materials.
Students and Parents
Research tips, rules, and other resources for your History Day project.
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Learn how to become a History Day judge.
State History Day
Heading to state History Day?  All the information you will need to know to get you through the day!

What is History Day?

History Day is…

  • a national program, with state and regional (county-level) competitions, in which students prepare projects – posters, exhibits, papers, websites, dramatic performances and documentary films – on a historical theme
  • an opportunity for students to improve academic achievement through deep and broad study addressing multiple standards and including tasks such as formulating questions, reading widely and thoroughly, bridging reading to writing, doing primary research, evaluating evidence, organizing, presenting, explaining and defending ideas
  • an arts-integrated,  project-based teaching approach that moves above and beyond book learning
  • a form of authentic assessment of young people as historians – and thus an antidote to imposed one-note accountability
  • an opportunity for students to research genuine and culturally-relevant topics they care about and that relate to their own sense of self, family and community
  • an opportunity for students to learn about people and events central to ongoing struggles for justice and democracy

What does a History Day student participant do?

Specific rules and guidelines are available in the History Day rulebook. In general, though, students who participate in History Day…

  • participate as individuals OR in groups of two to five
  • choose topics tied to the central theme, then conduct extensive primary and secondary source-based research through libraries, archives, museums, oral history interviews, and even travel to historic sites
  • analyze and interpret their sources to draw conclusions about their topics’ historical significance
  • present their work in original papers, websites, exhibits, dramatic performances and documentary films
  • enter into competitions in the spring at county, state and national levels where their work is evaluated by professional historians, community members and educators.

What topics may be addressed in History Day projects?

During the 2011-2012 school year, National History Day invites students to research topics related to the theme of Revolution, Reaction and Reform in History. For more information, please visit the NHD website at:

When and where will Contra Costa & Alameda County History Day 2012 be held?

The dual county History Day competition will be held at the Oakland Museum of California on Saturday, March 24, 2012. History Day Eve events will be the night before, March 23, also at the Oakland Museum (information to come).

Where can one find more information about History Day 2012?

You can view an excellent introductory video and get basic information about National History Day at:

More information and supporting materials are also available from:

National History Day Contact
Avi Black,
ACOE History-Social Science Coordinator
Fax: 510-670-3239


2011 National History Day Logo



2012 Preliminary Registration Form

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Information for Teachers

Want your students to love history? Then National History Day is the program for you!

National History Day motivates students to discover history by:

  • Cultivating interest: students research a topic of their choice
  • Developing research skills: students act as historians discovering how to uncover primary sources, build historical context and form historical interpretations
  • Becoming experts on their research topic: presenting their research to teachers, students, and historians
  • Achieving success
    -The shy student gains confidence when speaking about a topic he/she has researched
    -The apathetic student gains passion by choosing a topic of personal interest
    -The high achieving student increases his/her ability to articulate their learning through presentation

All students are winners in the National History Day Program!

Teacher Resources

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Information for Students and Parents

What is the National History Day Contest, you ask? Each year more than half a million students just like you participate. You will choose a historical topic related to the annual theme, and then conduct primary and secondary research. You will look through libraries, archives and museums, conduct oral history interviews, and visit historic sites. After you have analyzed and interpreted your sources, and have drawn a conclusion about the significance of your topic, you will then be able to present your work in one of five ways: as a paper, an exhibit, a performance, a documentary, or a web site.

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Kenneth E. Behring National History Day Contest


National History Day Contest - Saturday, March, 24, 2012

Oakland Museum of California
1000 Oak Street, Oakland, CA 94607-4892

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Academic Events
Chief Communications Officer 925.942.3400
Communications Specialist 925.942.3406
Electronic Communications Specialist 925.942.3330
FAX, Academic Events   925.942.3454

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Page updated on: September 19, 2014

Rev: 0.3-043014-BETA3