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Tess Porter

Digital Content Producer
Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access
Smithsonian Staff
Digital Content Producer

I'm the Digital Content Producer at the Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access. Here, I research and develop learning resources focused on the topics of history, art, and culture for projects both within the Smithsonian and in collaboration with other institutions. I also train educators on how to create their own customized content in the Lab.

learninglab@si.edutwitter.com/smithsonianlab

Tess Porter's collections

 

Japanese American Incarceration: Camp Objects

<p>This topical collection includes objects used by inmates in Japanese American Incarceration camps.  It is one in a series of collections, each containing different types of resources, about the Japanese American Incarceration; see also <a href="http://learninglab.si.edu/q/ll-c/gCGyk6eEyx7hGU4a">Japanese American Incarceration: Images of Camp Life</a>, <a href="http://learninglab.si.edu/q/ll-c/yqzp7FXFJtCqPsik">Japanese Incarceration: Publications, Letters, and Other Documents</a>, and <a href="http://learninglab.si.edu/q/ll-c/219EPFjW3g1MKqND">Japanese American Incarceration: Articles and Videos about Inmate Experiences</a>.</p> <p>In February 1942, following the bombing of Pearl Harbor, President Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066 and authorized the imprisonment of approximately 75,000 Americans of Japanese ancestry and 45,000 Japanese nationals in incarceration camps.  This order was not rescinded until 1945.</p> <p>Teachers and students may use this collection as a springboard for classroom discussion; for example, what types of objects inmates created during their incarceration and why they created these objects. This collection is not comprehensive but rather provides a launching point for research and study. </p> <p><em>This Smithsonian Learning Lab collection received Federal support from the Asian Pacific American Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center.</em> </p> <p>Keywords: internment camp, world war ii, ww2, wwii, gaman</p> <p>#APA2018 </p>
Tess Porter
42
 

Japanese American Incarceration: Articles and Videos about Inmate Experiences

<p>This topical collection includes articles and videos about Japanese American experiences in incarceration camps.  The collection highlights four individuals and their stories: Fred Korematsu, a civil rights activist; Minoru Yasui, a lawyer and civil rights advocate; Norman Mineta, a politician who grew up in the camps; and Isamu Noguchi, an artist who self-deported himself to an incarceration camp. Other important articles and videos about inmate experiences are located at the end. This collection is one in a series of collections, each containing different types of resources, about the Japanese American Incarceration; see also <a href="http://learninglab.si.edu/q/ll-c/gCGyk6eEyx7hGU4a">Japanese American Incarceration: Images of Camp Life</a>, <a href="http://learninglab.si.edu/q/ll-c/yqzp7FXFJtCqPsik">Japanese Incarceration: Publications, Letters, and Other Documents</a>, and <a href="http://learninglab.si.edu/q/ll-c/D1atcYAXArxq55uY">Japanese American Incarceration: Camp Objects</a>.</p> <p>In February 1942, following the bombing of Pearl Harbor, President Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066 and authorized the imprisonment of approximately 75,000 Americans of Japanese ancestry and 45,000 Japanese nationals in incarceration camps.  This order was not rescinded until 1945. </p> <p>Teachers and students may use this collection as a springboard for classroom discussion. This collection is not comprehensive but rather provides a launching point for research and study. </p> <p><em>This Smithsonian Learning Lab collection received Federal support from the Asian Pacific American Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center.</em> </p> <p>Keywords: internment camp, world war ii, ww2, wwii</p> <p>#APA2018 </p>
Tess Porter
30
 

Investigating Civil War Uniforms

<p>This topical collection includes resources related to Civil War uniforms.  Investigating these Union and Confederate uniforms - through types, differences, and similarities - helps to understand the different human resources of the Union and Confederacy, as well as the experience of individuals who fought in the Civil War. </p> <p>Collection contains two lesson plans (both of which can be adapted using resources in this collection), articles of clothing worn by Union and Confederate soldiers, lithographs, photographs, articles, a website, and a symposium.</p> <p>Keyword: Zouave</p>
Tess Porter
58
 

How Are Robots Changing Human Life?

<p>This collection explores the essential question: How are robots changing human life? Students will lead an inquiry into this question through a variety of resources - objects, videos, articles, and websites - examining the history of robotics from the 16th century to the present, the problems robot designers have attempted to address with their inventions, and how they try to address them. Supporting questions to scaffold students' inquiry include: What problems were these robots designed to address? Have these problems changed over time? Have strategies for addressing these problems changed over time?</p>
Tess Porter
23
 

Homo floresiensis: Teaching Resources

<p>This topical collection gathers resources related to Homo floresiensis, commonly known as the Flores “Hobbit." H. floresiensis, was discovered in 2003, making it the second most recently discovered early human species. Contains a video, websites, a 3D interactive tour, and articles.</p><p>Keywords: physical anthropology</p>
Tess Porter
7
 

Hawaiian Monarchs

<p>This topical collection includes resources related to the eight monarchs of the Kingdom of Hawaii.  In order of succession, the monarchs are: Kamehameha I (r. 1810 - 1819); Kamehameha II (r. 1819 - 1824); Kamehameha III (r. 1825 -  1854); Kamehameha IV (r. 1855 - 1863); Kamehameha V (r. 1863 - 1872); Lunalilo (r. 1873 - 1874); Kalākaua (r. 1874 - 1891); and Liliʻuokalani (r. 1891 - 1893).  </p> <p>The Kingdom of Hawaii was established as a constitutional monarchy in 1810 by King Kamehameha I.  In 1893, a coup led by American businessmen driven by sugar and pineapple business interests in the Hawaiian islands overthrew Queen Lili'uokalani.  Despite native protests and Lili'uokalani's efforts to reclaim the throne, the United States annexed Hawaii as a territory in 1898.  Hawaii became an American state in 1959.</p> <p>This collection is not comprehensive but rather provides a launching point for further research and study.</p> <p><em>This Smithsonian Learning Lab collection received Federal support from the Asian Pacific American Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center. </em></p> <p>Keywords: Kamamalu, Emma, Kapi'olani, Kapiolani, Kalakaua, Liliuokalani, Hawaiian, royals, royalty</p> <p>#APA2018</p>
Tess Porter
37
 

Flashcard Activity: Asian Pacific American Resources

<p>This collection contains a diverse set of resources related to Asian Pacific Americans that may be used as an introductory activity to spark classroom discussion and prompt students to conduct research about how Asian Pacific American history is American history.  For discussion questions and activity implementation ideas, click "Read More."  A file to print these resources as flashcards is located at the end of the collection; please see the resource's Information (i) tab for printing instructions.</p> <p>This collection is not comprehensive but rather provides a launching point for further research and study.</p> <p><em>This Smithsonian Learning Lab collection received Federal support from the Asian Pacific American Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center. </em></p> <p>Keywords: printable, flash card, think puzzle explore, project zero visible thinking routine, apa</p> <p>#APA2018</p>
Tess Porter
48
 

Exploring Complexity: Westward the Course of Empire Takes Its Way

<p>In this activity, students will analyze an artwork that celebrates the idea of Manifest Destiny and western expansion - Emanuel Leutze's 1861 mural study for <em>Westward the Course of Empire Takes Its Way</em>, the final version of which rests in the U.S. Capitol Building.  Through the use of two Project Zero Thinking routines - <em>What makes you say that?</em>, a Visible Thinking routine for interpretation and justification; and <em>Parts, Purposes, Complexities</em>, an Agency by Design routine for looking closely - students will consider what message this painting conveys, how choices made by the artist convey that message, as well as what perspectives are portrayed and what perspectives are missing.  After looking critically, students will watch a video and learn from senior curator Richard Murray how to read this painting and what messages/images they may have missed.</p> <p>This activity can be used as an entry point or supplement in studying westward expansion, the idea of Manifest Destiny, how public perspectives are shaped, and more.  Resources to extend this activity include: a website about the final mural located in the U.S. Capitol Building and a Smithsonian American Art Museum lesson plan about both the mural study and the final mural.</p> <p><em>Keywords: Emanuel Gottlieb Leutze, manifest destiny, westward expansion</em></p>
Tess Porter
7
 

Eudora Welty: Examining Portraiture

<p>This teacher's guide provides a portrait and analysis questions to enrich students' examination of Eudora Welty, a Pulitzer Prize-winning author known for her evocative novels and short stories set in the American South. Includes the video "Defining Portraiture: How are portraits both fact and fiction?" and the National Portrait Gallery's "<em>Reading" Portraiture Guide for Educators, </em>both of which provide suggestions and questions for analyzing portraiture.  Also includes a video and blog post that look closely at this portrait, as well as a related article about Mississippi's new writers trail that may be used as a lesson extension.</p> <p>Consider:</p> <ul><li>How is this portrait both fact and fiction?</li><li>How does this portrait reflect how Eudora Welty wanted to be seen, or how others wanted her to be seen? Consider for what purpose this portrait was created.</li><li>Having read one of her stories, does the portrait capture your image of Eudora Welty? Why, or why not?</li><li>If you were creating your own portrait of Eudora Welty, what characteristics would you emphasize, and why?<em></em></li></ul><p>Keywords: mississippi, ms, story, optimist's daughter, writer, #BecauseOfHerStory</p>
Tess Porter
6
 

Dissolution of Native American Territory 1885-1905

<p>This student activity examines what events, including the Dawes Act of 1887, contributed to the change in Native American reservation boundaries over time. Includes a video discussing 19th century views toward Native Americans, maps of reservation territory in 1885, 1895, 1905, and 1965, discussion questions, and an opportunity to learn more using an interactive map.</p> <p>Big idea: Understand how boundaries of Native American reservations have changed over time, and what events lead to the alteration of borders.</p> <p>Keywords: American Indian, western expansion</p>
Tess Porter
8
 

Designing a Better Voting Machine: 1880s to Today

<p>Objects are time capsules; they embody values, aspirations, or problems of a particular time and place and mark a stage of technological evolution. This student activity examines voting machines used in U.S. elections over more than a century. Looking closely and understanding the historical objects’ design evolution will inform students’ design of new machine intended to overcome barriers to voting in today's elections. </p> <p>The first five images are voting machines from the late 1800s to the early 2000s. Students will explore their parts, purposes, and complexities, then read the Washington Post article "Broken machines, rejected ballots and long lines: voting problems emerge as Americans go to the polls." Finally, students will design (and may prototype) a voting machine.<br /></p> <p>This collection incorporates two Project Zero Agency by Design routines: <em></em><a href="https://learninglab.si.edu/collections/agency-by-design-voting/xf6JuBhCB1u29e8h/#r/517111">Parts, Purposes, Complexities</a>, a routine for looking closely; and <a href="https://learninglab.si.edu/collections/agency-by-design-voting/xf6JuBhCB1u29e8h/#r/517112">Imagine If...</a>, a routine for finding opportunity. Questions in each routine are open-ended and should be used to spark peer discussion in small groups or as a class. For more information on how to use and facilitate each routine, see their resource tiles at the end of the collection, as well as the <a href="http://www.agencybydesign.org/">Agency by Design website</a>.</p> <p><em>Keywords: vote, voter, maker, making </em></p>
Tess Porter
13
 

Compare and Contrast: Personal Perspectives in Portraiture

<p>In this activity, students will explore how portraits reflect both the personality of the subject and the artist's personal view of the subject. They will examine two portraits - both painted by James McNeill Whistler of his patron (and eventually ex-patron) Frederick Richards Leyland. Using looking strategies, students will compare and contrast the artist's perspective of his subject before connecting the portraits to music as a final activity.</p><p>Big Idea: How do portraits reflect both the personality of the subject and the artist’s view of their subject? How can visual art and music communicate similar messages?</p> <p>This collection was created for the District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) Arts Professional Development Day. It was created in collaboration with the <a href="https://learninglab.si.edu/profile/freersackler_education">Education Department at the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery</a>.</p> <p>Keywords: Peacock Room</p>
Tess Porter
6