high academic standards

The National History Day in Maine program adheres closely to social studies standards in the areas of historical skills, literacy, and in-depth research in the following ways:

  • Posing Questions About Topics in History

  • Building a Strong Thesis Statement

  • Locating Primary and Secondary Sources

  • Using Sources to Draw Conclusions

  • Presenting the Findings


Annual Theme

A new theme is chosen every year by the National History Day organization. Past themes included:

  • Leadership & Legacy in History

  • Conflict & Compromise in History

  • Rights & Responsibilities in History

  • Triumph and Tragedy in History

The theme for 2020: Breaking Barriers in History

National history day in maine

A History Education Program for Grades 6-12

National History Day in Maine is a co-curricular academic program that fosters in-depth research and critical analysis skills for students in grades 6-12.  Students select a topic relating to a national theme. Using primary and secondary resources, students research a topic and present conclusions in one of the following ways:

  • Research Paper: Traditional academic paper, complete with citations

  • Exhibit: Museum-style exhibit using images, text, and supporting resources

  • Documentary: 10-minute video combining images and analytical narration

  • Performance: 10-minute live performance using actual or composite character

  • Website: Web-based collection of interactive pages

Click here for national award winning examples from each category.

An academic challenge

Students may choose to enter their projects in the History Day event. This four-level competition includes classroom evaluations, regional and state competitions, and a national event. Students compete in either the Junior (grades 6-8) or Senior (grades 9-12) division.

Projects are evaluated against these standards:

  • Historical Quality

  • Relation to Theme

  • Clarity of Presentation

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student outcomes

  • Increased Engagement with History

  • Enhanced Research Skills

  • Improved Literacy


Contest Dates

Southern Regional Contest
Museum LA, Lewiston
March 6, 2020

Northern Regional Contest
John Bapst Memorial High School, Bangor
March 28, 2020

State Contest
University of Maine, Orono
May 2, 2020

National Contest
University of Maryland
June 14-18


2020 NHD in Maine Contest Schedule
2020 Regional Contest by County
2020 NHD Theme Book
Herstory: Women in American History Lesson Plans
NHD Rulebook
Teacher Resources

General Contest Schedules-Lewiston, Bangor, and State

2019 South Regional Contest Finalists
2019 North Regional Contest Finalists
2019 State Contest Winners
2019 State Contest Special Award Winners
2019 NHD in Maine State Contest Winners Photos
2019 NHD National Contest Photos


Make a tax-deductible financial contribution to NHD in Maine. Make your check payable to the University of Maine, add National History Day to the memo line, and mail it to:
University of Maine Foundation
Buchanan Alumni House
Two Alumni Place
Orono, ME 04469-5792
Credit Card and Electronic Check Donations Can be Made Here.

National History Day in Maine is a collaborative effort between the Margaret Chase Smith Library, the University of Maine, the Maine Masonic College,
Museum LA, John Bapst Memorial High School, the Maine Humanities Council, and the Maine Historical Society.