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Tip of the Week: 5 glorious government goodies


I’m a history guy. My shelves are full of history related titles. (Current reads? The Wright Brothers and the Oregon Trail.) I taught US history to 8th graders and World History to college kids. Did my graduate research on the Kansas Mennonite reaction to World War One.

But my first love was political science. I earned my high school government credit by campaigning for Kansas governor John Carlin and registering voters in Garden City. Graduated with a BA in political science and thought briefly about taking the civil service exam so I could apply to the State Department.

Several weeks ago, I was called to task by a secondary government teacher because there’s not enough civics and government stuff on History Tech. And I realized, yeah . . . maybe I could spend a few more minutes here and there focusing on some government resources. So today? Five of my favorite go to government goodies.

Studying or teaching civics and government? This should be your first stop. GovSpot is a non-partisan portal designed to simplify the search for the best and most relevant government information online. A virtual resource center for U.S. citizens, students, educators, business people, government employees and anyone exploring the Web for government information, makes it easy to find the best state and federal government Web sites and documents, facts and figures, news, political information and much more.

FirstGov: Your Gateway to the Federal Government
Timely, needed government information and services and make them accessible anytime, anywhere, via your social media channel of choice. Really everything you need to know about the Feds in one place. And for lessons and resources for teachers, be sure to check out

Civics and Government Lesson Plans – Library of Congress
What better place than the Library of Congress to find handy lessons and resources about the government?

Best of History Websites: Government
A great list of sites and resources designed specifically for the civics / government teacher.

Dirksen Congressional Center
The goal of the Center is to support a greater public understanding of the U.S. Congress through archival, research, and educational programs. You can find a wide variety of resources as well as lessons.

Bonus government goodies?

Google Database Explorer
The Google Public Database Explorer is an online tool that can quickly provide access to large amounts of data in ways that are easy for you and students to understand. Perfect for using for instruction and for your kids as they solve authentic problems.

Social Studies Central
Find a few more extra resources on my SSC government page.

History Tech
Got some time to kill? Browse through the 93 posts here at History Tech tagged “government.”

Have fun!

7 Comments Post a comment
  1. nietodorese #

    These are great resources! I teach an American survey course for college freshmen so I love to introduce digital history sources to compliment the textbook and required readings. I also recommend the National Archives and Records Administration Website. It is less fancy and pretty than the LOC website but has great historical documents that are available to access online. Thanks for the recommendations!

    September 5, 2015
    • glennw #

      Yup! NARA has some awesome and incredibly awesome stuff. Thanks for reminding us all!


      September 7, 2015
  2. Check out AwesomeStories vast archive of historical primary sources with guiding stories into topics. Teachers and students can build your own multimedia evidence based stories using our archive, 18 world-renowned archives or your own sources! AwesomeStories: the MakerSoave for the Humanities!

    September 5, 2015
    • glennw #

      Thanks for sharing! Love AwesomeStories.


      September 7, 2015
  3. Thanks for the links, these are very nice resources to have!

    September 8, 2015

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