A quick read of an historical journal can give students an example as they begin writing their own classroom journal. But, an historical journal can be used for much more. These journals provide:
- a picture of common life during the past--students become part of the past by reading present-tense.
- motivation—students feel as if they are prying into a private world.
- a way for students to act as historians.
- an opportunity for students to discuss change, continuity, and historical perspective.
Caution: Historical journals may need to be typed and edited for younger students. Information gleaned from journals can be written in chart form for discussion after the journal has been read. (ie: chart out seasonal activities, foods, etc.)