"In the Beginning, all America was Virginia."
William Byrd II
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Educator programs

The Virginia Historical Society has many exciting options for teachers. Throughout the year, the education staff offers programming for teachers to expand their knowledge of Virginia history. These unique learning opportunities are available teachers of all grade levels.

In addition to programming for teachers, the society also offers an array of programming targeted toward homeschool students and their families.

The VHS currently offers three teachers institutes. Weinstein Properties Story of Virginia Teachers Institute is a week-long program that is offered twice each summer. The dates and subject of the E. Claiborne Robins, Jr., Teachers Institute and Primarily Virginia, the VHS on-line institute, vary from year to year. All institutes are open to private and public school teachers of any grade level.  The VHS also offers teacher workshops using primary resources.

Weinstein Properties Story of Virginia Teachers Institute

Exceptionally well-planned, executed institute that provides a history teacher with superb tools, regardless of the subject he/she teaches. My enhanced knowledge of archaeology, anthropology, ethnology, and linguistics will definitely benefit me in my World History classroom.
Milondra Coleman, teacher

Are you a teacher, or do you know one? The Virginia Historical Society announces its Weinstein Properties Story of Virginia Teachers Institutes for 2016. This week-long institute will be held June 27–July 1 and repeated July 25–29 and is open to all Virginia public and private school teachers. The institutes will provide teachers with an overview of the rich history of Virginia from the earliest habitation to the present. In addition, participating teachers will explore the vast collections of the VHS and learn how to teach their students to analyze primary sources and use historical thinking skills. The classes are aligned with the revised curriculum framework for Virginia Studies.

The cost is $75, which covers lunches and materials. Participating teachers will be eligible for recertification points, and will also receive:

  • A one-year individual membership to the Virginia Historical Society
  • A free award-winning distance learning program via HistoryConnect for your class
  • Financial support for student field trips to the VHS in the 2016–17 school year    

Submit your application for the Weinstein Properties Story of Virginia Teachers Institute.

For more information, contact Bill Obrochta at 804.342.9651 or wobrochta@vahistorical.org.

E. Claiborne Robins, Jr.,  Teachers Institute

The E. Claiborne Robins, Jr. Teachers Institute examines Virginia’s history through the collections of the Virginia Historical Society. The program is designed to introduce teachers to the rich collections of the VHS and demonstrate how those materials can be used in the classroom.

Primarily Virginia: MeadWestvaco Online Teachers Institute

Primarily Virginia is an online course designed for teachers to explore Virginia’s past by examining objects and primary sources. These pieces of the past will be used as a lens to examine different historical eras in Virginia history. All course work is to be completed through the course website, and there are no required in-person class meetings. 

Learn more about Primarily Virginia: MeadWestvaco Online Teachers Institute Summer 2016.

Teacher Workshops using primary resources

These programs are designed to strengthen research and analytical skills of middle and high school teachers. Teachers will learn firsthand how the historian is a detective who solves problems by discovering "clues" in letters, diaries, photographs, newspapers, and maps. They will also learn how to interpret primary source materials and how conservators and archivists catalog, conserve, and store manuscripts and artifacts. If you have questions, please contact Bill Obrochta at wobrochta@vahistorical.org.

Learn more about tours and workshops.

Bill Obrochta

William B. Obrochta, Manager of Educational Services

Do you have a question about the educational resources we offer at the Virginia Historical Society. You may contact me at 804.342.9651 or wobrochta@vahistorical.org. I look forward to speaking with you.