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Kate Harris

Learning Lab Coordinator
Smithsonian Institution
Middle School (13 to 15 years old), High School (16 to 18 years old)
Teacher/Educator
Language Arts And English, Civics, Literature, Cultures, Economics, Social Studies, Geography, Writing, US History, Arts, Other :
Learning Lab Coordinator

I'm a history-lover, art fan, and bookworm. I taught high school history (U.S. History and World Religions) for ten years in North Carolina, teach currently in Pittsburgh, PA,  and am working to help teachers make the most of this new resource!


Kate Harris's collections

 

Robber-Baron or Captain of Industry: Andrew Carnegie

<p>This collection includes different perspectives and information about Andrew Carnegie. Students are challenged to build an argument supporting one position or the other: Robber-Baron or Captain of Industry--using the resources as evidence. <strong>Was Carnegie an industrialist who desired to get rich and promote himself regardless of the effects on his workers? Or was he an example of the American dream, an industrial leader who improved the nation and helped its people?</strong></p> <p>Investigate the items in this collection while thinking about those questions. After an initial review of the collection, complete the sorting activities at the end to test your understanding of the issue and begin to develop an argument reflecting your answer to the question above. </p>
Kate Harris
19
 

The Remains at Pompeii

This is a collection of teaching resources that could be used to support a lesson on Pompeii and Mt. Vesuvius as well as life in ancient Rome. Included are artworks picturing Pompeii, archaeological artifacts, and links to "street views" of the ruins as well as magazine articles on the topic. Some questions to consider are: -What can we learn about the life of ancient Romans from the ruins at Pompeii? -What are the strengths and weaknesses of learning from archaeological ruins? -Why have the ruins at Pompeii continued to fascinate people over time?
Kate Harris
12
 

From Silk Worms to the Silk Road

This is a collection of resources that could be used to support a lesson on the discovery of silk and the impact of the silk road(s). Artifacts include images of silkworms and the silk-making process, websites with information about the luxuries traded on the Silk Road, and video summary. Possible guiding questions include: -Why did silk become such an important commodity in China? -How did the development of the silk trade routes impact both Europe and Asia? -In what ways do artifacts from Europe and Asia reveal the cultural connections created by the Silk Road?
Kate Harris
19
 

The 1850s and Causes of the Civil War

This collection includes artifacts, stamps, political cartoons, portraits, and videos representing various long-term and short-term causes of the Civil War. Students could use the collection as the basis for a sorting activity: Which causes are long-term and which are short? Which represent economic, social, or political differences between the North and South? Can they be put in chronological order? Which show attempts at compromise and which show that violence was difficult to avoid? Additional teaching ideas are listed in the Notes to Other Users section.
Kate Harris
33
 

Was Reconstruction a Failure?

The period after the Civil War, known as Reconstruction, had lofty goals for reuniting the nation and preserving the new rights given to African-Americans. For a time, these goals were achieved and three important amendments were made to the Constitution. However, by 1876 Reconstruction was considered over and much of the progress that had been made was undone. This collection of detailed prints and cartoons highlight many different aspects of Reconstruction and asks students to consider the overall result of Reconstruction. Students can analyze each one using the embedded questions.
Kate Harris
8
 

Context for Weikers Family Collection: Life in Nazi Germany and Resettling in the United States

<p>This collection was created to align with with the Weikers Family collection and provides general context about life in Germany for a Jewish family in the 1930s and their eventual resettlement to the United States. The artifacts in the collection are not necessarily specific to the Weikers family, but give some idea of how others might have shared similar experiences. </p><p>Tags: Nazi Germany, Holocaust era, primary sources, Pittsburgh</p>
Kate Harris
19
 

Slave Resistance

This collection includes items representing various forms of slave resistance and rebellion. Students should determine what kind of actions are pictured in the case of each item and use them to create a robust definition of slave resistance. Guiding Questions: What does it mean to "resist" slavery? How did white slave-owners respond to such actions? Is maintaining a distinct cultural heritage a form of resistance? Why or why not? How do religion, art, and music encourage resistance?
Kate Harris
13
 

Discover the Story: A Miner's Life

This collection includes objects and artifacts representing life in as a miner. Students are challenged to write a creative story or narrative based on the objects in the collection, illustrating life at the time. The last two resources in the collection are a worksheet that teachers may use to frame the assignment and a grading rubric for the assignment. Tags: Pennsylvania, narrative, Pittsburgh, mining, miner, immigration, coal, worker safety, child labor
Kate Harris
16
 

Immigration to America

This collection provides an overview of immigration to the United States, but emphasizes the increased immigration during the Gilded Age. Students can complete the collection independently, keeping in mind the following guided questions: -Why have people been motivated to immigrate to the United States? -What challenges have immigrants faced while traveling to or after arriving in the United States? -What contributions have immigrants made to American society?
Kate Harris
20
 

The Five Pillars of Islam

<p>This collection includes artifacts and images that represent the Five Pillars of Islam. Students should complete the chart (included as the final resource) by first explaining what each pillar is. Then, after looking through the collection, they should identify an artifact that represents each one and explain why.</p><p>Tags: Islam, Muslim, religion, Muhammad, object analysis, practice, pilgrimage, hajj, fasting, Ramadan, Shahadah, zakat, tithe, salat, prayer</p>
Kate Harris
16
 

Ancient Rome: Discover the Story

This collection includes objects and artifacts representing life in ancient Rome. Students are challenged to write a creative story or narrative based on the objects in the collection, illustrating Roman life. The last two resources in the collection are a worksheet that teachers may use to frame the assignment and a grading rubric for the assignment.
Kate Harris
12
 

Women in World War II

This collection teaches students about the changing role of women during World War II: their role in the workplace, increasing presence in the military, and participation in voluntary organizations that supported the war. Students should think about how these activities reinforced traditional notions of gender divisions while they also allowed women to experience new activities.
Kate Harris
23