Mindwalk Interactive Activity
- Think about ("mind walk" through) all the activities you were involved in during the past 24 hours. List as many of these activities as you can remember.
- For each activity on your list, write down what evidence, if any, your activities might have left behind. To help you think of traces that might be left behind, review:
- Review your entire list, and what you wrote about evidence your activities left behind. Then consider these questions:
- Which of your daily activities were most likely to leave trace evidence behind?
- What, if any, of that evidence might be preserved for the future? Why?
- What might be left out of an historical record of your activities? Why?
- What would a future historian be able to tell about your life and your society based on evidence of your daily activities that might be preserved for the future?
- Class Discussion
- Now think about a more public event currently happening (a court case, election, public controversy, law being debated), and consider these questions:
- What kinds of evidence might this event leave behind?
- Who records information about this event?
- For what purpose are different records of this event made?
- Class Discussion
Historical Evidence in Your Daily Life
- Did you create any records of your activities (a diary, notes to yourself, your planner, a letter to a friend or relative, an e-mail message, a telephone message)?
- Would traces of your activities appear in records someone else created (a friend's diary, notes, or calendar entry; a letter or e-mail from a friend or relative)?
- Would traces of your activities appear in school records? in business records (did you write a check or use a charge card)? in the school or local newspaper? in government records (did you get your driver's license or go to traffic court)?
- Would anyone be able to offer testimony (or oral history) about your activities (who and why)?
Other Types of Historical EvidenceTraces you left behind in your daily activities might include:
- The trash you have thrown away;
- Material objects you use every day (coins, paper money, stamps, computers);
- Objects in the place you live
This activity was taken from:
The Historian's Sources: Mindwalk. Library of Congress. December 1998 http://lcweb2.loc.gov/ammem/ndlpedu/lessons/psources/mindwalk.html#quests
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Last Updated 4 July 2000