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Philippa Rappoport

Manager of Community Engagement
Smithsonian Office of Educational Technology
Smithsonian Staff

I work in community engagement, education, and outreach at the Smithsonian Office of Educational Technology (OET), and have a particular interest in creating collections about culture and heritage, as well as collections to support English and other language learning and the Smithsonian-Montgomery College Fellowship program. At OET over the last several years I have focused on creating digital assets for schools, families, and new immigrant English Language learners to complement teacher professional development and pan-Smithsonian programming, including Learning Lab teaching collections, YouTube videos with tradition bearers, a handmade family stories book-making website, and online heritage tours.

Philippa Rappoport's collections

 

Classroom Activity with "¡Pleibol!”: Close Looking to Explore One Family’s Story of Latino Baseball

<p>This teaching collection helps students to look closely and think critically by using three Thinking Routines to explore the cultural relevance of one family's baseball-related objects from an exhibition at the National Museum of American History, "¡Pleibol!: In the Barrios and the Big Leagues." The exhibition seeks to document the history of Latino culture through the lens of baseball, and explores baseball not only as a pastime close to the hearts of many people in many communities, but also for Latinos as a place to advocate for rights and social justice. <br></p> <p>Included here are the objects themselves, a bilingual video with curator Margaret Salazar-Porzio, three suggested Thinking Routines - "See, Think, Wonder," "The 3 Y's," and "Picture Writing" - from Harvard's Project Zero Artful Thinking and Global Thinking materials, and supporting digital content about the exhibition. At the close of the activity, students are guided to examine a personal object of their choice and tease out the story it tells.</p> <p>For an extensive teaching collection created by the Smithsonian Traveling Exhibition Services as a companion resource for the traveling exhibition, "¡Pleibol! In the Barrios and the Big Leagues / En los barrios y las grandes ligas," see <a href="https://learninglab.si.edu/collections/pleibol-in-the-barrios-and-the-big-leagues-pleibol-en-los-barrios-y-las-grandes-ligas/bohbJm2MXuqjdHmY">https://learninglab.si.edu/collections/pleibol-in-the-barrios-and-the-big-leagues-pleibol-en-los-barrios-y-las-grandes-ligas/bohbJm2MXuqjdHmY</a>.</p> <p>For use in Social Studies, Spanish, English, and American History classes</p> <p>#LatinoHAC #EthnicStudies</p> <p><br></p> <p><br></p>
Philippa Rappoport
15
 

Intangible Heritage through Material Culture: The Journey of an Ecuadorian Boat Seat

<p>This teaching collection helps students to look closely and think critically by exploring an Ecuadorian boat seat, the first object donated to the National Museum of African History and Culture, and how this tangible object represents the survival and transmission of intangible cultural heritage in the African diaspora. The seat belonged to Débora Nazareno, a descendant of enslaved Africans in Ecuador, and is engraved with Anansi, a popular spider figure in West African folklore. The boat seat was gifted to the museum by her grandson, Juan Garcia Salazar, a renowned Esmeraldan historian. </p> <p>Included here are the objects itself, a bilingual video with curator Ariana Curtis, two suggested Thinking Routines - "See, Think, Wonder" and "Unveiling Stories" - from Harvard's Project Zero Thinking and Global Thinking materials, and supporting digital content about the museum display, Maroon communities, Anansi, the oral tradition.</p> <p>For use in Social Studies, Spanish, English, and American History classes<br /></p> <p>#LatinoHAC </p>
Philippa Rappoport
21
 

Periodical Cicadas: In Homage to Brood X

<p>Life in Spring 2021 along the Eastern strip of the United States, stretching from New York to Tennessee, has been infused, overpowered, inundated with the creeping, buzzing, molting, crunching, and altogether inescapable presence of Brood X cicadas. They come above ground every seventeen years and have arrived this year in deafening numbers to woo, mate, and lay and hatch their eggs. The newly-hatched nymphs fall from their host trees and burrow into the ground to begin the next subterranean cycle, uniting sky and earth, and continuing the life cycle. This process aerates the soil and prunes trees, while the cicadas' bodies feed a wide variety of animals and serve as an important source of nitrogen for growing trees. Entomologist Eric Day of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University extension said of their arrival, "This is a real treat. This is an unusual biological phenomenon. Periodical cicadas only occur in the eastern United States; they don't occur anywhere else in the world. It's just going to be an amazingly big, big show."</p> <p>This collection pays homage to these fascinating creatures, reminding us of the mysteries and wonders of life, both above and below "the surface." </p> <p>Keywords and hashtags: DST2021, digital storytelling, Just Future, DST2021<br><br></p>
Philippa Rappoport
32
 

"Becoming Dolores": A School/Museum Program to Engage Families through Art and Technology

<p>This collection details a photography and community engagement project that the Smithsonian Office of Educational Technology did with educators from the National Portrait Gallery and the Fairfax County Family Literacy Program. It includes assets and resources designed to help teachers (art, English, social studies, and media technology), museum educators, and community-based informal learning educators recreate the program as is, or design their own, based on the specific needs of their classroom or learning community. </p> <p>For our project, pairs of native Spanish speaking immigrant moms and their middle school children did a five-day (15 hours total) training session at their school and at the Smithsonian Portrait Gallery. They learned about Dolores Huerta, portraiture, and photojournalism through the exhibition, "One Life: Dolores Huerta." Participants took portraits of themselves, critiqued each other's work, and created photo exhibitions about their communities and important issues, that were displayed at the Hispanic Heritage Month Family Day at the National Portrait Gallery.</p> <p>Dolores Huerta, the "co-architect" of the American Farm Workers Movement and mother to eleven children, proved to be a huge inspiration to the participants. Before the workshop, 33 percent of the parents and none of the children saw themselves as able to make change in their community; after the workshop, 100 percent of parents and children reported seeing themselves as able to make change in their community. In addition, 100 percent of the mothers and 80 percent of the children reported that they believed they had increased their artistic skills.</p> <p>#LatinoHAC, #EthnicStudies </p> <p>This collection supports Units 2 (What is the History - Civil Rights Movements) and 3 (Critical Geography and Current Issues) of the Austin ISD Ethnic Studies Part A course, and Unit 3 (Local History and Current Issues) of the Austin ISD Ethnic Studies Part B course. "What would you advocate for to beneficially change your community? How can you advocate to create change within your community?" "How do you understand the concept of community advocacy? What is needed for an individual to cultivate personal change?"</p> <p><em>This Smithsonian Learning Lab collection received Federal support from the Latino Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Latino Center. </em></p>
Philippa Rappoport
15
 

Exploring Digital Storytelling within the Learning Lab: Personal Responses to Covid-19

<p>This Learning Lab collection was made to complement the presentation, "Exploring Digital Storytelling within the Learning Lab: Personal Responses to Covid-19," for  <a href="https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.vsu.ru%2Fenglish%2F&data=04%7C01%7Crappoph%40si.edu%7Cac8bd60cd8604dfa674308d8bd2b78ae%7C989b5e2a14e44efe93b78cdd5fc5d11c%7C0%7C0%7C637467341725810423%7CUnknown%7CTWFpbGZsb3d8eyJWIjoiMC4wLjAwMDAiLCJQIjoiV2luMzIiLCJBTiI6Ik1haWwiLCJXVCI6Mn0%3D%7C1000&sdata=5dcdEkeScZ3%2FaX%2F2U5YLeMej%2F%2B9b9akCQFhzYSw%2BV5k%3D&reserved=0" originalsrc="https://www.vsu.ru/english/" shash="lMDtMdMW/eKRFcDwiIcYf/QEzB2Q4BoZDnhsm+EjmLdHFlCh1Fk97gNkn04c3bWtn9uUxvQlQ5y4wULP2F1GPYOqtUn584nH64Bhd8QiND6c5RyWhGlNplgWV4XMURWywXsV63QKtogzBT18zlfrd+pLko5xcUn9Ui5IFD+BH7Q=" title="Original URL: https://www.vsu.ru/english/ brClick to follow link.">Voronezh State University</a> faculty and students, and supported by the <a href="https://nam02.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.britishcouncil.ru%2F&data=04%7C01%7Crappoph%40si.edu%7Cac8bd60cd8604dfa674308d8bd2b78ae%7C989b5e2a14e44efe93b78cdd5fc5d11c%7C0%7C0%7C637467341725800426%7CUnknown%7CTWFpbGZsb3d8eyJWIjoiMC4wLjAwMDAiLCJQIjoiV2luMzIiLCJBTiI6Ik1haWwiLCJXVCI6Mn0%3D%7C1000&sdata=ZqPzqPd5xh79B%2FcFa1QsJjQDux6jRz9uTrjD6coeUJc%3D&reserved=0" originalsrc="http://www.britishcouncil.ru/" shash="G/O3+23lyl/KRoOIOyvJjUFEiQI8+IC31k+9BSAa27MXMln5+fgYWt6jtTGRy4fp6LhqurA4w2Z/hCL0c+WpRGG9MDFMls0nB0SJ5O9/OwmzWDwvGqsszfXJc0ZT2N1vSVKyzHp/j2fnCNcrIaq2/q25Q37YihV8Y96YtngICcQ=">Cultural and Education Section of the British Embassy in Moscow</a>. <br></p> <p>During the workshop,  co-facilitators <a href="https://learninglab.si.edu/profile/24977">Dr. Antonia Liguori</a> (Loughborough University, UK) and <a href="https://learninglab.si.edu/profile/212">Dr. Philippa Rappoport</a> (Smithsonian Office of Educational Technology) will demonstrate a variety of techniques to incorporate personal experiences in the exploration and use of museum resources. They will share how the Smithsonian Learning Lab and Digital Storytelling (DS) can be used together to access digital resources, build learning experiences, and cultivate collaboration and community over distance. </p> <p>We will explore artwork from the Smithsonian digital collections, including an exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC, <em><a href="https://artsandculture.google.com/exhibit/IgLygJNprGf3JA%20and%20https:/npg.si.edu/exhibition/eye-i-self-portraits-1900-today">Eye to I: Self-Portraiture as an Exploration of Identity</a></em>, which compels viewers to consider how self-portraits reflect an artist’s identity through what is revealed and concealed. We will look specifically at the <em>Eye to Eye </em>artworks from the context of social distancing and unrest in the time of Covid-19 as a prompt to make personal connections.  <br></p> <ul></ul> <p>You will find in this collection: </p> <ul><li>some examples of annotated objects that demonstrate the functionality of the Learning Lab;<br></li><li>some examples of digital stories made by students and also other educators during previous Digital Storytelling workshops; </li><li>a description of the Digital Storytelling process;</li><li>a short story circle activity using exhibition images to explore shifting from a cognitive appreciation of art to a personal connection to museum objects;</li><li>workshop participants' reflections;  </li><li>supplemental resources. </li></ul> <p>#DigitalStorytelling</p>
Philippa Rappoport
40
 

Inclusive Memory Project: Digital Storytelling as a Teaching Strategy in the Smithsonian Learning Lab

<p>This Learning Lab collection was made to complement the presentation "Digital Storytelling as a Teaching Strategy in the Smithsonian Learning Lab," as part of the series, <em>The Inclusive Memory Project in the Post Covid Era</em>", hosted by the Centro di Didattica Museale at the Università degli Studi Roma Tre. <br></p> <p>During the workshop,  co-facilitators <a href="https://learninglab.si.edu/profile/24977">Dr. Antonia Liguori</a> (Loughborough University, UK) and <a href="https://learninglab.si.edu/profile/212">Dr. Philippa Rappoport</a> (Smithsonian Office of Educational Technology) will demonstrate a variety of techniques to incorporate personal experiences in the exploration and use of museum resources. They will share how the Smithsonian Learning Lab and Digital Storytelling (DS) can be used together to access digital resources, build learning experiences, and cultivate collaboration and community over distance. </p> <p>You will find in this collection:<br></p> <ul><li>a short icebreaker activity using exhibition images to start shifting from a cognitive appreciation of art to a personal connection to museum objects; </li><li>some examples of annotated objects that demonstrate the functionality of the Learning Lab; </li><li>some examples of digital stories made by students and also other educators during previous Digital Storytelling workshops; </li><li>a description of the Digital Storytelling process; </li><li>workshop participants' reflections;  </li><li>supplemental resources. </li></ul> <p>#DigitalStorytelling</p>
Philippa Rappoport
46
 

Art, Creative Writing, and Public Speaking: A Portraiture Workshop for the ELL Classroom

<p>Art, Creative Writing, and Public Speaking: A Portraiture Workshop for the ELL Classroom</p> <p><em>Our Lives as Art</em></p> <p>This collection includes instructions and documentation of a replicable art-based program for English Language Learners (ELLs). The information included can be adapted for high school students and speakers of any language, including native English speakers. Activities were designed to foster in participants important skills such as visual literacy, public speaking, creative writing, art appreciation, collaborative learning, and advocacy, and also to develop empathy, confidence, and self-esteem. </p> <p>The collection was created by Beth Evans (National Portrait Gallery), Micheline Lavalle (Fairfax County Public Schools Family Literacy Program), and Philippa Rappoport (Smithsonian Office of Educational Technology). </p> <p>Keywords: ESL, ESOL, portraits, migration, immigration, stories, identity, monologues<br></p> <p>#NPGteach</p>
Philippa Rappoport
51
 

“I Didn’t Believe I Could Be Brave”: How the Smithsonian Uses Stories to Amplify Voices and Build Community

<p>The Smithsonian Institution, the world's largest <strong><a href="https://www.si.edu/museums">museum</a></strong>, <strong><a href="https://www.si.edu/educators">education</a></strong>, and <strong><a href="https://www.si.edu/ResearchCenters">research</a></strong> complex, is 175 old this year. The Institution was founded in 1846 with funds from the Englishman James Smithson (1765–1829), a chemist and mineralogist who left his estate to establish in the United States an institution dedicated to “the increase and diffusion of knowledge.” Today, the museum includes nineteen museums and study centers and the National Zoo, with two more museums created by Congressional legislation just this past year.<br></p> <p>The Smithsonian Institution is committed to telling a full and inclusive history of America, and to catalyzing important conversations on issues affecting our nation and the world. This includes well-known and lesser-known stories. It includes curatorial voices, voices reflected in the collections, and visitor voices. As Smithsonian Secretary Lonnie G. Bunch III said in introducing the Institution's new <em><a href="https://www.si.edu/raceandoursharedfuture">Our Shared Future: Reckoning with Our Racial Past </a></em><a href="https://www.si.edu/raceandoursharedfuture">initiative</a>, “At a moment when our country is in crisis, we the Smithsonian have a responsibility to help our nation move forward. To transform our understanding of race and racism. To amplify the voices of the communities we serve. To bring people together across different backgrounds, races, experiences, and beliefs. To create a space for all Americans to recognize how much they have in common: shared history, shared heritage, shared hopes for the future.”<br></p> <p>This collection was created to offer an introduction to the many ways the Smithsonian Institution uses stories to increase and diffuse knowledge, amplify voices, and build community, to share at the <a href="https://storytellingacademy.education/dst2021-conference-announcement-24-hour-online-marathon-in-june/" target="_blank">Digital Storytelling Conference 2021</a> in June 2021. This collection includes just a sampling of the amazing work, research, education, and engagement happening across the Institution. Please reach out to us at <a href="mailto:learning@si.edu">learning@si.edu</a> if you would like help or guidance using the Learning Lab or incorporating museum digital content into your storytelling or educational engagement. </p> <p></p>
Philippa Rappoport
38
 

From Deer to Dance: How-to Demonstrations and Informational Videos

<p>This collection comes from a family festival at the National Museum of the American Indian that explored uses of leather in Native communities - literally from the hunting and tanning of deer and their hides, to their use in ritual and everyday life. The collection includes demonstrations of deer-hide tanning, moccasin making, bead working, instructions to make a leather pouch and a daisy chain bracelet, and an interview and performance by Lawrence Baker and the White Oak Singers.</p>
Philippa Rappoport
9
 

Native American Ledger Art: Informational Video and Classroom Activity

<p>In this collection, Educator Ramsey Weeks (Assiniboine, Lenape, and Hidatsa), from the National Museum of the American Indian, talks about Native American Ledger Art, and shares ideas for family and classroom "winter count" activities. The activities are suitable for English, art, history, and social studies classrooms.</p> <p>The collection also includes information and resources about Winter Counts from the National Museum of the American Indian, the National Museum of Natural History, the National Anthropological Archives, the Smithsonian Institution Archives, the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, Smithsonian Libraries, and the Smithsonian Office of Educational Technology</p>
Philippa Rappoport
11
 

Identity, Narrative, Transformation, and Change: A Learning Resource in support of "Critical Conversations" (a DC Public Schools course)

<p>This collection includes activities to enable critical conversations in the classroom in an atmosphere of mutual trust and respect. The collection supports the "Identity and Narrative" first section and the "Transformation and Change" fourth section of the District of Columbia Public Schools course, "Critical Conversations," and can also be used in a variety of courses, including Ethnic and Area Studies, Social Studies, English/Composition, Media and Technology, and History. It addresses the following content standards: </p> <ul><li>Understand the importance of one’s identity as it relates to their place in history and influence in transforming today’s society.</li><li>Examine and identify master narratives and counter-narratives relating to individual and other affinity groups.</li><li>Evaluate the complexities and factors that influence and dictate identity formation.</li><li>Identify and analyze their social, ethnic, racial, and cultural identities and examine societal perceptions and behaviors related to their own identities.</li><li>Identify and analyze the issues and root causes that currently affect the DC community. </li><li>Create solutions that combat injustices within the DC community. </li><li>Understand how critical consciousness can lead to action.</li></ul> <p>The collection is split into seven sections of activities and resources that build on each other but can also be used modularly. It includes a range of suggested activities aimed to develop in students visual literacy skills, empathy, confidence, and self-expression, and introduces users to the five-step Digital Storytelling process: briefing and story-circle (here these are the "close-looking" and "considering representation" activities); writing; recording; editing; and sharing. The final suggested activity asks students to reflect on their own lives and how they can be agents for change in their own communities. These suggested activities are detailed on the left side panel of each section heading tile. They should open up directly so that you see the descriptions, but if not, click on the paper clips to open them.</p> <p>The materials and methodology for this collection reflect my work in heritage education and community engagement at the Smithsonian Office of Educational Technology (OET) and as a college instructor in Russian culture and folklore, as well as work specifically in Digital Storytelling, which I have been practicing since having had the pleasure and good fortune of being introduced to it by <a href="https://learninglab.si.edu/profile/24977" target="_blank">Dr. Antonia Liguori </a>(Loughborough University, UK) when she was a Smithsonian Fellow at OET in 2018. Dr. Liguori's research project, "Storying the Cultural Heritage: Digital Storytelling as a tool to enhance the 4Cs in formal and informal learning," explored the use of Digital Storytelling in combination with the digital resources of the Smithsonian Learning Lab. (You can read more about that project <a href="https://repository.lboro.ac.uk/articles/conference_contribution/Digital_storytelling_in_cultural_and_heritage_education_Reflecting_on_storytelling_practices_applied_with_the_Smithsonian_Learning_Lab_to_enhance_21st-century_learning/9319391" target="_blank">here</a>, and click on "Conference Proceedings, pages 63-75.) Also reflected here is work from two multi-year, ongoing, inspiring program partnerships: in Family Literacy Engagement with Micheline Lavalle of the Fairfax County Public School Family Literacy Program and Beth Evans of the National Portrait Galery, and in Educator Professional Development and Digital Storytelling with Professors Sara Ducey, Jamie Gillan, and Matthew Decker of Montgomery College.</p> <p>Digital storytelling is very special. I hope you can experience the magic of it in your classroom. Please do share your experiences on the Padlet at the end of the collection.</p> <p>#EthnicStudies #MexicanAmericanStudies</p> <p><br></p> <p><br></p>
Philippa Rappoport
46
 

Learning Lab Training Collection on the Theme: “Facing the Complex, Multiple Challenges of the 21st Century"

<p>This collection is designed to help educators bridge the classroom experience to a museum visit. It is intended to demonstrate various ways to use the Learning Lab and its tools, while offering specific, replicable, pre-engagement activities that can simply be copied to a new collection and used to help students engage with museum resources. </p> <p>Included here: </p> <ul><li>Section 1: a set of flashcards, a template document so that teachers can create and print their own specific sets, and strategies for their use in their classrooms. </li><li>Section 2: a variety of student activities and resources to explore artist Luis Cruz Azaceta's "Shifting States: Iraq," a metaphorical representation of the unrest taking place in Iraq, and more broadly, an exploration of the human condition during times of crisis.  This section includes an image of the work from the Smithsonian American Art Museum, an explanatory video with curator E. Carmen Ramos, two  Thinking Routines - "See, Think, Wonder" and "The 3 Y's" - from Harvard's Project Zero Visible Thinking and Global Thinking materials, and  an array of prompts and Learning Lab tools to help students think critically and globally.  </li><li>Section 3: a short assignment to get participants started using the Learning Lab.</li><li>Section 4: spacer tile template to serve as chapter headings in longer collections.</li></ul> <p>This collection is adapted from a teaching collection on the same theme (Luis Cruz Azaceta's "Shifting States: Iraq" ( <a href="http://learninglab.si.edu/q/ll-c/mBWHa8fHUy9vJsE5" style="background-color:rgb(63,63,63);">http://learninglab.si.edu/q/ll...</a>), that includes extension activities. It was created for the 2019 cohort of the Smithsonian-Montgomery College Faculty Fellowship Program on the theme, "The Search for American Identity: Building a Nation Together," and then adapted for the 2020 program on the theme, “Humans and the Footprints We Leave: Climate Change and Other Critical Challenges." </p> <p>Keywords: #MCteach</p> <p><br></p>
Philippa Rappoport
81