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How to Find Teaching Resources in the Library

This guide describes the teaching resources available in Andersen Library and the PK-12 Curriculum Collection. as well as how to locate them. In addition, it provides direction to locating online information such as article databases and useful websites.

About the Historical PK-12 Textbook Collection

Revised 05/06/2019

Purpose of the Collection:

To provide primary source examples of pedagogical methods, contents, and evolving American values as portrayed in PK-12 textbooks.


Historical Textbooks date from the early to mid-19th century through the mid-20th century. The collection includes both primary and secondary textbooks, with a focus on the following subjects:

  •  Art education
  • Business education: bookkeeping, accountancy, commercial education
  • Composition and rhetoric
  • Geography
  • Handwriting
  • Health/hygiene education
  • History, United States and World 
  • Language instruction: French, German, Latin, English
  • Music education
  • Reading primers and readers
  • Science: zoology, botany, anatomy
  • Speech
  • Spelling
  • Vocational education

Not collected:

  • Dictionaries
  • Readers for foreign language learning
  • Pedagogy


The University Archivist in collaboration with the Education Librarian

Retention of existing materials

  • Retain items that are regularly requested by faculty for instruction, including those that fall outside the collection scope.
  • Reading primers and readers
    • no duplicates, best copy
    • no more than two exemplars from each decade beginning 1940’s through present, one volume/PK through gr.6, or every 5th edition of a series.
  • Retain only a Teachers Edition when the student material is clearly presented.
  • Retain elementary and secondary pedagogy that is currently held. No additional titles will be added from Main Collection.
  • No duplicates will be retained.

Acquisition of new materials:

New items are primarily acquired through gifts or when weeded from Main or Curriculum Collections.


Special Collections – Historical Textbooks


  • Historical children’s textbooks are cataloged in ALMA using Library of Congress subjects and classifications, and findable in Research@UWW.
  • The location is identified as follows: UW-Whitewater - Special Collections, Historical Textbooks, 1st Floor   
  • Patrons and community members may visit the University Archives to view items in the collection.