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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 :

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

 

Timeline: Causes of the Civil War

<p>This collection includes artifacts, stamps, political cartoons, portraits, and videos representing various long-term and short-term causes of the Civil War. After reviewing the collection, students will sort resources into chronological order, focusing on continuity and change over time. </p><p>Tags: compromise, Civil War, John Brown, Fort Sumter, Ft, Abraham Lincoln, Sumner, Brooks, Taney, Dred Scott, 1850, 1860, secession</p><p><br /></p><p>Additional teaching ideas are listed in the Notes to Other Users section.</p>
Kate Harris
30
 

Ekphrastic Poetry Lesson

<p>According to <a href="https://www.poetryfoundation.org/resources/learning/glossary-terms/detail/ekphrasis" target="_blank">the Poetry Foundation</a>, "An ekphrastic poem is a vivid description of a scene or, more commonly, a work of art. Through the imaginative act of narrating and reflecting on the "action" of a painting or sculpture, the poet may amplify and expand its meaning"</p><p>This collection is based on a lesson plan from the Smithsonian American Art Museum, which guides users through the process of using artwork to inform and inspire poetry. Strategies for developing original poems, sample ekphrastic (art-inspired) poems, and suggested artworks are included to stimulate thinking.</p><p>tags: creative writing, art, poetry, poems</p>
Kate Harris
9
 

What stories do artifacts tell?

<p>This student activity asks students to develop a story about a mystery artifact, editing and adjusting their narrative as they discover more information. Students will develop historical thinking skills while learning more about the experience of living in a specific time and place.</p> <p>tags: Japan, internment, incarceration, Manzanar, World War II, World War 2, WW2, Executive Order 9066, Roosevelt, FDR</p> <p><em>#historicalthinking</em></p><p><br /></p>
Kate Harris
12
 

The Fight to End Apartheid

<p>This is a topical collection of resources related to the fight to end apartheid. Teachers and students can use this collection to explore strategies used to fight against apartheid as well as famous leaders in the fight. Strategies include economic sanctions, boycotts, and divestment, raising awareness through artists and musicians, nonviolent protest, armed resistance, and external political pressures on the South African government. This is a work-in-progress based on the digitized materials within the Smithsonian Learning Lab's collection--it is not meant to be wholly definitive or authoritative. Think of it as a starting point for further inquiry!</p><p>Possible student activities include:</p><p>-researching one strategy of resistance and/or one well-known leader in depth.</p><p>-drawing comparisons between political organizations and movements like the ANC, PAC, Black Consciousness Movement, and United Democratic Front.</p><p>-creating a timeline of resistance to apartheid.</p><p>-debating the use of armed resistance and "sabotage."</p><p>-interviewing adults who may remember the end of apartheid.</p><p>-drawing comparisons between the civil rights movement in the United States and the anti-apartheid movement.</p><p>-choose 1-3 events and make a case for them as turning points in the fight against apartheid. What makes these events so significant?</p><p>tags: apartheid, South Africa, Mandela, Tutu, Huddleston, Soweto, townships, Sharpeville, Defiance Campaign, Biko</p>
Kate Harris
28
 

Wounded Knee, Past and Present

<p>Wounded Knee is often portrayed as the closing point of the wars between Native Americans and the United States government in the late 19th century. However, the place also marks a moment of historic protest. This collection can be used to explore the importance of place in protest movements as well as the history of violence and resistance for indigenous people in the United States. </p><ul><li>How should the site of Wounded Knee be remembered?</li><li>Why did the activists choose to occupy Wounded Knee? What is the significance of that place?</li><li>How were the actions of the American Indian Movement activists similar or different to their ancestors? Consider motives, strategies, and successes, and partnerships.</li></ul><div>tags: Sitting Bull, Oglala, Sioux, Lakota, occupation, massacre, DAPL, Dakota Access, Red Cloud, Kicking Bear, Ghost Dance, cavalry</div>
Kate Harris
9
 

History of Mormons in America

<p>This collection of artifacts, photographs, texts, and historical markers is intended to help students explore the history of the Mormon religion in America. </p><p>Each of these items is intended to spark inquiry, following the process below: </p><ol><li>Students should choose one artifact on which to focus. </li><li>Have them use the artifact analysis PDF (last resource) to begin their study of the artifact. </li><li>Next, have students generate questions about the artifact? What do they wonder about? What does it tell them about the Mormon religion or its history within the United States? </li><li>Have students complete some general research on their artifact that will help their classmates piece together the story of the Mormon experience.</li></ol><p>As a collaborative project, students should use the PBS Forced Migrations map/timeline as a model for a class map/timeline of their own. </p><ol><li>Project an image of the map on a class whiteboard or create your own basic outline using large paper. </li><li>Have each student present their research findings. The main questions they should answer are: What does it represent about the Mormon experience? Where would the artifact they chose be placed (geographically and in terms of chronology)? </li><li>Students should then place place their image on the map with significant dates noted. </li><li>After all groups have presented, review the narrative of the Mormon experience with the class. What would they identify as critical moments in Mormon history? What questions do they still have?</li></ol><div>Tags: religion, Moroni, Joseph Smith, Brigham Young, Mormon, New York, Utah, Illinois, gold plates, inquiry</div>
Kate Harris
18
 

3-D Resources from the Smithsonian

<p>This collection provides an introduction to the 3D resources available from the Smithsonian Institution. All of the items in this collection are videos showing 3D models or sharing the process of creating such materials. To explore the models directly in a 3D viewer, download file information, and discover tours and other educator resources, please visit <a href="http://3d.si.edu" target="_blank">3d.si.edu</a>.</p><p>Models of interest to K-12 teachers might include:</p><ul><li>Apollo 11 command module</li><li>Amelia Earhart's flight suit</li><li>Liang Bua (archaeological site where <em>homo floriensis</em> was discovered)</li><li>Funerary bust of Haliphat (from Palmyra)</li><li>Jamestown burial sites and artifacts</li><li>David Livingstone's gun</li><li>Porcelain dishes and other home items in the Freer Gallery of Art (from Asian cultures)</li><li>Killer Whale Hat</li><li>Whale and dolphin fossils</li><li>Cosmic Buddha</li><li>Woolly mammoth skeleton</li><li>Wright Brothers flyer</li><li>Gunboat Philadelphia</li></ul>
Kate Harris
19
 

Iconic and Ironic? Depression-Era Photographs

<p>This collection includes three photographs by Farm Security Administration artists that use language and image to create an American scene in the late 1930s-early 1940s. The first has become an iconic image of the Great Depression by Margaret Bourke-White, although it has a more specific history that users will learn about. Students will be asked to consider why the first image became so closely linked with the Great Depression, how the artist and author used irony to make a statement, and how different groups may have experienced the Depression in different ways. After reading a passage from Bud Not Buddy (by Christopher Paul Curtis) and answering reflective questions, students will write their own passage about one of the remaining photographs.</p><p>Essential Questions:</p><p>-How do these artists use images and language to create rich portraits of America?</p><p>-In what way do these images suggest divisions or unity within America during hte 1930s and 1940s?</p><p>Tags: Bud Not Buddy, Margaret Bourke White, Dorothea Lange, Ben Shahn, Farm Security Administration, soup kitchen, bread line, hobo, hoboes, comparison, irony, descriptive writing</p>
Kate Harris
6
 

Red Caps and Pullman Porters

<p>This is a topical collection of items relating to red caps and Pullman porters, positions associated with train travel during the 20th century.</p><p>Teachers and students might use this collection to explore how these jobs reinforced the social status of African-Americans while at the same time ensuring steady, reliable work and the rise of an African-American middle class. They also might consider the impact of A. Philip Randolph and the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters. How did the development of this labor union later impact the Civil Rights movement?</p><p>tags: amtrak, railroad, trains, sleeping car, segregation</p>
Kate Harris
19
 

What were the causes of U.S. imperialism?

<p>This collection examines the causes of U.S. imperialism at the turn of the century through the lens of two political cartoons. Students will investigate both cartoons and develop a definition of imperialism based on what they find. </p>
Kate Harris
4
 

Coffee Break

The best selection of coffee makers, urns, and mugs to be found in the Smithsonian collection. The best thing about waking up...
Kate Harris
23
 

Numbers

<p>This collection is an example of how the Learning Lab could be used to create number or alphabet books for younger students. Students can search for the numbers and letters represented in the art, sculpture, and artifacts that exist throughout the Learning Lab. </p><p>Alternatively, students could be given a specific theme (animals, for example) and be tasked to find images representing the theme for each letter or number. Annotation (notebook tabs) can be used to include additional text or explanations. Quiz questions could be used to ask "how many ________ are in this image?".</p><p>Have fun!</p><p>Tags: reading, books, alphabet, numbers, counting, math, young learners, early childhood</p>
Kate Harris
17