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Teaching about Wisconsin

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Teaching about Wisconsin?

Many resources for teaching about Wisconsin can be found through our state agencies and organizations.  Primary sources about Wisconsin are available through the Wisconsin Historical Society, Recollection Wisconsin, and digital archives from many Wisconsin universities. There are also resources curated for Wisconsin Day, a state observance day. The resources below are divided into geographic, historic, government, and economic themes.

Wisconsin Geography

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The State Cartographer's Office has information and resources on Wisconsin mapping and state projects. 

Maps of Wisconsin counties can be found at the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.  You can also get free roadmaps, or wall maps (small fee).

The Wisconsin Department of Administration has zip codes, geographic codes, basic county outline maps, metro zones, place listings, and municipalities.

Information on the geographical areas of Wisconsin are available at Wisconline.

At the Wisconsin State Park System site, you can download a visitor's and field trip guide.  There's also a list of all state parks and links to their websites for more information. 

Wisconsin also has four national park units.  The National Park Service site has a layered, interactive map showing historic areas of preservation in Wisconsin.

Wisconsin History and Primary Sources

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The Wisconsin Historical Society has links to all of the state historic sites and museums, information for teachers, and searchable primary source databases.

Wisconsin Biographies from Wisconsin Media Lab is a collection of media to enrich the social studies and literacy curriculum, using the stories of notable figures in Wisconsin history. 

The University of Wisconsin Digital Collections has The State of Wisconsin Collection with many original documents such as older Blue Books, historical state atlases, and local history links.   

Found in Wisconsin is an index of digital collections hosted by Wisconsin libraries, museums, historical and genealogical societies, and educational institutions.  They also have a more technical database where users can search by subject or location, or perform a search based on the resource type or institution name.  

Recollection Wisconsin is a space to discover digital historical and cultural resources from libraries, archives, museums, and historical societies across Wisconsin.  They are also Wisconsin's service hub for the Digital Public Library of America.  

Wisconsin 101:  Our History in Objects is a collaborative public history project with an interactive online exhibit and programming on Wisconsin Public Radio.  Wisconsin residents can nominate objects of interest or importance to their communities, then research, write, and illustrate histories of those objects for publication on the website and segments of WPR's Wisconsin Life.  

Wisconsin Hometown Stories from Wisconsin Public Television and the Wisconsin Historical Society is a video series with overviews of cities and towns across the state.  

Wisconsin Government

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Wisconsin Digital Archives is provided by the Wisconsin Document Depository Program.  It is a collection of documents published by state government from 2001 to the present.  These provide a record of major state government programs and cover current, newsworthy topics about life in Wisconsin.  Overwhelmed by so much information?  Try their teachers section.  

The Wisconsin State Government Portal is a wealth of information about our state's system of government. 

The Wisconsin Policy Forum's Framework of Your Wisconsin Government  has been used by teachers for many years as a quality overview of state and local government.  (Formerly WI Taxpayers Alliance)

The State of Wisconsin Blue Book is an almanac of Wisconsin facts, such as biographies of current state legislators, descriptions of state government, and the text of the Wisconsin Constitution.  

Wisconsin Economics

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The Wisconsin Economy-at-a-Glance is on the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics website. 

The Wisconsin Policy Forum (previously WI Taxpayers Alliance) is a nonpartisan nonprofit education organization that researches and communicates information on state politics.  

Wisconomy: Wisconsin Economic History is a directory of historic articles outlining Wisconsin's economic past.

For questions about this information, contact Kristen McDaniel (608) 266-2207