ALASKA HISTORY DAY
Each year, more than half a million middle and high school students around the world take part in National History Day® (NHD), with more than 800 here in Alaska. As writers, filmmakers, web designers, playwrights, and artists, students create unique, independent projects that bring stories of the past to life.
Alaska History Day is the state affiliate for this yearlong competition for students in grades 6-12. Students work individually or in small groups to choose a topic that relates to an annual theme, research the topic, and then develop their research into one of five presentation categories:
website (NOTE: NHD is no longer using Weebly. The new website creation tool is NHD WebCentral!)
Alaska Humanities Forum works with statewide partner agencies, teachers, and volunteer judges to hold local and statewide contests in the spring from which students advance to participate in NHD's national contest. Since Alaska began participating in 1989, hundreds of Alaskan students have competed at the national level.
The theme for the 2021 National History Day Contest is Communication in History: the Key to Understanding. See more information on this year's theme here.
2021 Regional Contest Dates:
Regional Contests happen in early spring.
2021 Virtual State Contest Dates:
State contest happens at the end of March.
2021 Virtual National History Day Contest:
Virtual contest will happen in early June.
New Rule Book
Click here to see the updated NHD Rule Book.
Let us help you get started. Are you interested in having your students do Alaska History Day projects? You can require projects as part of your curriculum, let interested students to do projects outside of class, or any combination - it's up to you. Students need to have an adult sponsor in order to participate, and this can be a teacher, librarian, or parent if the child is home schooled. The role is to serve as a mentor, helping to guide students in designing and selecting a project concept and connecting them to resources.
One of the easiest ways to introduce the program in your class is to have students look at a sample project . This gets them thinking about what a good project should include. Contact state coordinator Kari Lovett to talk more about first steps and to be connected with a veteran AHD teacher in the state.
What stories catch your attention? What part of the world interests you? National History Day's goal is to help you explore something you care about in the way that fits you best.
Here are some examples:
- A performance about something that deeply affected your community or culture (Nevada, 2016)
- A performance about someone notable from your family (Alaska, 2017)
Check out the NHD student resources site to learn more about the guidelines and to see examples of past projects.
Judging Resources and Sign-Up
Wondering what History Day judges do? Watch this video from Minnesota Historical Society for a brief introduction to the National History Day program, and to learn more about the important role judges play.