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National History Day in Idaho

NHD in Idaho

National History Day in Idaho is an exciting way to engage students in history. The program pulls students out of the classroom and into the world of the professional historian. Students track down information about historic people and events by exploring archives, libraries, and other resources. This research leads to new insights and original conclusions that students use to prepare exhibits, documentaries, websites, papers, and performances. History Day is a great way to teach students critical thinking skills while instilling a lifelong love of history.

Curriculum and contest materials are distributed to NHD coordinators and teachers in the fall.  To receive current National History Day in Idaho information, contact your regional coordinator, or the Coordinator for National History Day in Idaho - Johanna Bringhurst,, or call (208) 780-5190.


National History Day 2017

This year's theme:



Beginning in the fall, students will explore and research possible topics related to the the 2017 theme Taking a Stand in History.  The theme is broad enough to encourage investigation of topics ranging from local to world history, and from ancient times to the recent past.  Students need to consider and analyze how the facts, specific causes, impact of taking (or failing to take) this stand, and historical context of their chosen topic relate to the theme. Go here to see the theme narrative and a list of sample United States, European and World history topics. Go here to see a list of sample Idaho history topics.


Click here to download a PDF version of the 2017 Themebook.  It is also available online at


 2017 Contests


Thank you to all the students who competed in the regional contests! The winners of the Treasure Valley Regional can be found at this link. All winners in every region will be available to view soon!



Six Regional contests will be held in February and March 2017 at the following locations. Click on the "Contest" tab in the upper left corner of this web page for more details and for your region's registration links and information, or click here.



Saturday, February 25                Eastern Washington University Cheney, WA



Saturday, March 4                      Lowell Scott Middle School Meridian, ID



Monday, March 6                        Rocky Mountain Middle School Idaho Falls, ID



Friday, March 10                        Burley Junior High School Burley, ID



Saturday, March 11                    Riverstone International School Boise, ID



Saturday, March 18                    Idaho Arts Charter School Nampa, ID



The State contest will be held at the College of Idaho in Caldwell, Idaho, on Saturday, April 15, 2017. 



The NHD National contest will be held June 11-15, 2017, at the University of Maryland in College Park, Maryland.


CONTEST JUDGES!! If you are interested in judging at a regional or State contest, please contact the Coordinator, Johanna Bringhurst, at or call (208)780-5190. Online registration for judges will begin in January 2017.


2016 National Contest

Idaho participants at NHD national contest


Forty three students from Idaho traveled to College Park, Maryland in June to compete at the NHD national contest. It was a busy, fun-filled and exciting week for all the participants and their families. Congratulations again to all of the Idaho participants who worked so hard to get to the National contest! Check out more photos here.


2016 State Contest

2016 State winners


Congratulations to all the winners at the 2016 State Contest! Go here to view a list of all the winners. And to see more photos from the 2016 State Contest, click here.

Newsworthy Events

Normandy Institute


Renaissance High School teacher Janelle Gilson, and her student, Josh White, were one of fiteen teacher-student teams across the country selected to participate in the 2016 NHD Normandy: Sacrifice for Freedom Albert H. Small Student and Teacher Institute. Janelle and Josh spent the school year researching the story of Silent Hero Ray O. Coffey, a combat engineer from Idaho, who gave his life in World War II shorly after the D-Day landings in Normandy. In June, they traveled to Washington D.C. to finish their research, and then journeyed to Normandy, France with the other teacher-student teams to visit the D-Day beaches, museums and historic sites. Their final stop was the Normandy American Cemetery, where Josh delivered a heartfelt eulogy next to Combat Engineer Coffey's grave. Click here to see some photos from their trip to Normandy, and click here to watch their interview on KTVB's Viewpoint broadcast on July 31, 2016. The interview begins at about the 13 minute mark of the segment.


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