I finished Bruce Lesh’s Why Won’t You Just Tell Us the Answers a week or so ago and would recommend it. He does not use PBL per say in his classroom, but his method is very compatible with it. He does spend a bit too much time at the beginning and the end (to be honest I quit reading after Chapter 8) justifying his methods vs. traditional history class which I find unnecessary. If you need to be convinced that reading from a history book, listening to lectures, copying answers to the questions at the end of the chapter are not good teaching methods than I have little hope for you.
His core method is to have students look at the text, context, and subtext of historical sources both primary and secondary. He presents historical questions (like DQ’s) to his students and then supplies them with historical artifacts to have them struggle with historical interpretation just like historians do. He really outlines some nice lessons in the meat of the book and even lists the primary sources that he uses.
I thought it would be easy to locate them online since most are old and must be in the public domain, but I have struggled so far. So I want to ask fellow social studies teachers, have you found his resources? Do you have your own that you use? Do you have a go-to place to find resources? Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
This also had me thinking that a good history book would simply be a list of driving questions for each part of history and then a bunch of student-friendly excerpts from primary and secondary sources.
Check out the Primary Source Nexus (http://primarysourcenexus.org) from TPS-Barat. We put together primary source collections from the Library of Congress (see Primary Source Picks category and Themed Link Sets under PSN Resources menu) and featured images as well as provide teaching resources (Teaching & Learning category) and Tech Tips & Tutorials.
E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will send you the resources.
Thanks for reading the book.