Professional Development Programs

CMHEC offers professional development opportunities to support teachers offering historical inquiry projects--particularly History Fair. Check out the listings below for our 2015-2016 workshops, seminars, and institutes.

Unless otherwise noted, sessions are free to History Fair Partner schools.

2016 Professional Development Programs

The Website Certification training for History Fair teachers is an online tutorial. Teachers must be certified to offer the category to their students.

2015 kickoffHistory Fair 2016 Kickoff

WEDNESDAY, October 14, 2015, 4:30-7:00pm

Newberry Library, 60 W. Walton St.

Meet the new theme, "Exploration, Encounter, and Exchange in Illinois History" with a presentation about the Century of Progress by Diane Dillon, Newberry Library.

Watch a demonstration of Noodle Tools with Skinner North teacher Elaine Cox, and learn about "Explore Chicago Collection" with its director Jaclyn Grahl -- two tools to support your teaching and to enrich your students' inquiry.AND MORE.

Get classroom resources, food, and drink!

Contact with any questions.

Register here:

View the email invitation and forward it to your friends!

boot camp 2015

Learn everything about History Fair in one intense day-- from planning in your classroom to assessing the final product

Introduction to History Fair: The "Boot Camp"

Saturday, October 17, 2015, 9:30am-3:00pm

Harold Washington Library Center, 400 S. State St. Chicago, IL 60605

NON-CPS Teachers register here:

  • CPS Teachers may register via the CPS Learning Hub


Friday, November 13, 2015, 9:00am-3:00pm (CPS S.I.P. day)

Newberry Library, 60 W. Walton, Chicago


Contact with any questions.


museum workshopTeachers Only Hands-on Workshop at the Chicago History Museum

Tuesday, December 8, 2016, 4:30-7:00pm

More information to come!

NON CPS teachers register here:

CPS Teachers may register via the CPS Learning Hub

Contact with any questions.


Previous 2015-2016 Workshops -- Sorry you missed them!

Introduction to History Fair: The "Boot Camp"

Tuesday, August 25, 2015, 9:00am-3:00pm

Register here

gape 2013


National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Summer Institute: "Rethinking the Gilded Age and Progressive Era: Capitalism, Democracy, and Progressivisms, 1877 to 1920"

Chicago's rich Progressive Era history will be highlighted through the program's readings, discussions, lectures, inquiries, and explorations of historical and cultural resources. Participants will explore Hull House, take bus tours featuring significant sites in the city's labor history, investigate archival collections, and examine the impact of place through architecture. During the four-week institute, teachers will contemplate and debate how individuals and groups defined, reformed, and contributed to a vision for American democracy, opportunity, and culture. Robert Johnston (UIC), Charles Tocci (Loyola University Chicago), Rachel Allmen (CMHEC), and Michael Biondo (Maine South High School) will lead the institute.

Contact if you have questions about eligibility or the application process. You can also find more information at

This program can only accept a limited number of participants from the Chicago area, but please share this information with teachers in other parts of the country who might be interested. NEWS FLASH: The NEH has approved a program for Summer 2016.  Look for the announcement for applications in November 2015.


charles white

Visual Arts of the Black Chicago Renaissance

July 13-17, 9am-5pm

Explore the artists of the Black Chicago Renaissance, their art, and their contributions to the long civil rights movement.  Learn and develop your own lessons to integrate their works into your curriculum.

Led by Amy Mooney of Columbia College and Erik Gellman of Roosevelt University with guest scholars from the Art Institute and the South Side Community Art Center. Sessions will be held at historical and cultural institutions in the city.




stockyard gate

History Fair Field Trips for Teachers: The Chicago Labor History Bus Tour

Wednesday, July 8, 2015, 9am-5pm

Encounter the rich history of Chicago workers in this unique seminar led by Dr.  Jeff Helgeson in conjunction with the Illinois Labor History Society and the Teaching Primary Sources program at DePaul University. Explore the Library of Congress for primary sources about Chicago Labor History before boarding the bus for a tour of key labor sites. CPDUs offered. To register:




Website Certification

IMPORTANT NOTE TO TEACHERS: We are pleased to see your interest in the History Fair’s newest category, historical websites. Any teacher that wants to enter student website projects in the History Fair this year is required to take the training, below, and earn certification.


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