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Found 427 Collections

 

Mummification in Egypt: Ritual and the Afterlife

In this student activity, learn the process and religious significance of Ancient Egyptian mummification through analysis of objects associated with tombs and funerary rituals. 

Big ideas: Why and how did the Ancient Egyptians practice mummification? How does their religion effect their material culture?

Includes artifacts, multiple choice and discussion questions, and opportunities to learn more through a reading-level appropriate article and a webcast. Encourages cross-cultural comparison of Afterlife concepts. Resources for learning more about the subject, through videos and articles, are located at the end of this collection.

Keywords: mummies, mummy, archaeology

Tess Porter
22
 

Ancient Egyptian Religion & Social Hierarchy: Pyramids

This student activity examines the importance of religion and social hierarchy in Ancient Egypt through the construction of pyramids. Details evolution over time and encourages cross-cultural comparison. Includes photographs, an artifact, a video, a reading-level appropriate article, and opportunities to learn more at the Met Museum website and Google Street View.

Big Questions: 

  • How did the pyramids evolve over time? 
  • How does this evolution reflect the importance of religion and social hierarchy in Ancient Egyptian urban society?

Keywords: archaeology

Tess Porter
12
 

Ancient Greek Myth: Reinterpreted by African American Artists

In this student activity, analyze the timelessness of myth through three works of art by modern African American artists. Each artist, inspired by Ancient Greek myth, retells stories and reinterprets symbols to explore personal and universal themes. Includes three works of art, summaries of the myths they reference, and discussion questions. Also includes a video about the artist Romare Bearden and his series 'Black Odyssey,' that details Bearden's artistic process, the significance of storytelling in his art, and the lasting importance of 'Black Odyssey.'

Tags: greece

Tess Porter
6
 

The Classical Origin of Iconic American Symbols

In this student activity, analyze how and why iconic symbols of America, such as the Capitol Building and the United States Seal, were inspired by Greek and Roman art and architecture.  

Explores the big ideas:

  • How were symbols of America influenced by those of Ancient Greece and Rome? 
  • What might this desire to associate America with historic, successful democracies say about early American hopes for their new nation?

Includes: architecture, a seal, portraiture, a video, a primary source letter, discussion questions, and an opportunity to learn more through the full digitized text of "The Ruins of Palmyra," a publication that heavily inspired early American neoclassical architecture.

Keywords: greece, symbolism, classic, classical

Tess Porter
12
 

Senses Series - Hearing

How do we hear what we hear? This collection is about hearing the world in unexpected ways through human perspectives of science and culture, and animal adaptations. Meet a shark whose entire body is an ear; zoo otters who play the keyboard; rabbits whose large ear adaptations provide self-defense; and the reasons for a sea lion's bark. Learn about the structure and function of human ears can only see a certain type of light within the electromagnetic spectrum. Background information from the website Neuroscience for Kids provides an overview of how the ear and hearing functions work, as well as a sound experiments to try. The collections closes with a cross-cultural examination of hearing and function from Tibetan Buddhist monastics.

Based on exhibition project work through Science for Monks and The World of Your Senses Exhibition (2010).

Tracie Spinale
10
 

Senses Series - Sight in Humans and Animals

How do we see what we see? This collection is about seeing the world in unexpected ways through human innovations and animal adaptations. Meet a teen who invented a new way to see infrared, a visually impaired woman with a bionic implant, a shark whose eye is similar our own, a Giant Squid with the world's largest eyes, a mantis shrimp who sees many colors in all directions, and a nocturnal sweat bee who navigates the jungle in the dark. Learn about why human vision can only see a certain type of light within the electromagnetic spectrum. Background information from the website Neuroscience for Kids provides an overview of how the eye and brain function together, and experiments to try. The collection concludes with a cross-cultural examination of seeing from a Tibetan monastic Buddhist perspective. How might their experience of sight differ from your own? 

Based on exhibition project work through Science for Monks and The World of Your Senses Exhibition (2010).

Tracie Spinale
15
 

Senses Series - Taste

How do we taste what we taste? This collection is about the kinds of tastes that the human tongue experiences. Background information from the website Neuroscience for Kids provides an overview of how the tongue and taste function. Included are experiments to try, as well as examples of the kinds of tastes: sweet, salty, sour, hot and bitter. The collection closes with a cross-cultural examination of tongue function and tastes from Tibetan monastics—who recognize thirty-six different tastes!

Based on exhibition project work through Science for Monks and The World of Your Senses Exhibition (2010).

Tracie Spinale
14
 

Senses Series - Smell

How do we experience the sense of smell? This collection explores the variety of human and animal smell experiences. Videos examine ants that use smell to communicate, orchid bee perfumery, and the unique smell adaptation of the maned wolf. Background information from the website Neuroscience for Kids provides the structure and function of the nose, as well as olfaction experiments. The collection concludes with a cross-cultural examination of touch from a Tibetan monastic Buddhist perspective. How might their experience of smell differ from your own?

Based on exhibition project work through Science for Monks and The World of Your Senses Exhibition (2010).

Tracie Spinale
9
 

Senses Series - Touch

How do we experience the sense of touch? This collection explores the variety of human and animal touch experiences. From the characteristics of a variety of objects, to a video which examines the touch experience of tortoises and pandas... we all experience touch differently. Background information from the website Neuroscience for Kids provides touch experiments; an examination of pain and why it hurts, and the functionality of the body's largest organ—the skin. The collection concludes with a cross-cultural examination of touch from Tibetan monks' Buddhist perspective. How might their experience of touch differ from your own?

Based on exhibition project work through Science for Monks and The World of Your Senses Exhibition (2010).

Tracie Spinale
19
 

Prohibition and the 1920s US

Have students examine these and write statements about what they learned about Prohibition from each source.

Paula Fargo
5
 

How Posters Work

This collection is inspired by Cooper Hewitt's 2015 book and exhibition How Posters Work, written by Ellen Lupton, presenting works from the museum's astonishing collection of over 4,000 historic and contemporary posters.

In this student activity, you'll learn the basics of poster and advertisement design: how to tell a story, excite the eye, and use visual language to create emotional, effective design. At the conclusion of the lesson, you'll create a film poster of your own. This collection is perfect for graphic designers, illustrators, and enthusiasts alike. All you need is a passion for design, a curious eye, and love for a visual story.

Watch Ellen share her own poster design process in a hands-on design lesson here, or explore the original Cooper Hewitt exhibition

Cody Coltharp
12
 

Multiple Perspectives: Artwork of the Great Depression

In this activity, students will explore what life was like during the Great Depression through the perspectives of multiple artworks. After using looking strategies to examine six paintings, students will write a short essay comparing and contrasting these artworks while considering what art can reveal about life in particular time periods.

Big Ideas: 

  • How did perspectives regarding life during the Great Depression differ during that historical period
  • How can you see these differing perspectives through artwork created during the historical period?

Keywords: Public Works of Art Project, Federal Arts Project, Works Progress Administration, New Deal

Tess Porter
7
 

Activity Pages for Children

These Activity pages, each on a single theme, include word and number games, art exercises, and fun quizzes. With each activity, kids learn about something new, from the anatomy of the giant squid to the history of chocolate.

Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access
54
 

Investigating: Civil War Portraits

In this student activity, students will investigate nine portraits of people involved in the Civil War, both from the Union and the Confederacy. Through these portraits, students will gain an understanding of: experiences of people on both sides of the war; why these people are seen as historically significant; and how portraiture can communicate how a person wanted to be seen, or how others wanted them to be seen. Included with each portrait is a video that explains the historical significance of the person depicted.

Big Ideas: 

  • Why are these people, and the developments they shaped, seen as historically significant? 
  • How does portraiture communicate how a person wanted to be seen, or how others wanted them to be seen?

Tess Porter
10
 

Visual Connections between Buddhism and Ancient Greece

Using the Project Zero Visible Thinking routine "See Think Wonder," this activity investigates the cultural connections between Ancient Greece, Rome, and Gandhara* as seen through a sculpture of the Buddha, created in the 2nd century CE. Buddhist sculptures from Gandhara are significant, not only because they show the extent of Alexander the Great's influence on Asia, but also because they are some of the first human depictions of the Buddha in the history of Buddhist art.

Even without a deep knowledge of the art of this period, students can make visual observations and comparisons that reveal the blending of Asian and Greco-Roman culture in this particular region.

*Gandhara is a region in what is now modern Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Keywords: greek, kushan, mathura, india, inquiry strategy, classical, roman, gautama, siddhārtha, siddhartha, shakyamuni, lakshanas, signs of the buddha

#visiblethinking

Tess Porter
6
 

Photographs of the Great Depression: Unveiling Stories

This activity analyzes the stories told by photographs of the Resettlement Administration (RA) and Farm Security Administration (FSA) programs, which ran from 1935 to 1937 and 1937 to 1942 respectively. These photographs were taken to document the conditions and hardships experienced by Americans across the country during the Great Depression, as well as the success of relief services implemented by these two programs. Published widely in newspapers, magazines, books, and exhibitions, these photographs helped shape the public's perception and memory of this difficult time period.

Using two Project Zero Global Thinking Routines - "Unveiling Stories" and "The 3 Ys" - students will uncover the stories and perspectives portrayed by these photographs in multiple contexts, from the personal to the global. Additional resources (photographer interviews and an article) and information on how to use these routines in the classroom can by found by clicking Read More ».

RA & FSA photographers included in this collection: Carl Mydans, Dorothea Lange, Arthur Rothstein, and Marion Post Wolcott.

Keywords: poverty, rural, urban, roy stryker, new deal, inquiry strategy, global competence, global competency, 1930s, 30s, dust bowl, photojournalism

#historicalthinking

Tess Porter
19
 

The Bikini Atoll and Operation Crossroads: Unveiling Stories

In this activity, students will analyze photographs documenting the exodus of Bikini islanders from Bikini Atoll prior to Operation Crossroads, a pair of nuclear weapons tests and the first detonations of nuclear devices since the bombing of Nagasaki. These photographs were taken by Carl Mydans and were published in the LIFE Magazine article, "Atomic Bomb Island," on March 25, 1946.

Using two Project Zero Global Thinking Routines - "Unveiling Stories" and "The 3 Ys" - students will analyze the stories these photographs communicate about the experiences of the Bikini islanders and America's perspective on military advancement after WWII. They will also consider the perspectives presented by these photographs, in multiple contexts from the personal to the global. Additional resources (primary sources and the original article) and information on using this collection in the classroom can by found by clicking Read More ».

Keywords: atomic testing, atomic bomb, operation crossroads, bikini islands, bikini atoll, rongerik, able test, baker test, nuclear bomb, photojournalism, inquiry strategy, global competence, global competency, 1940s, 40s, 1950s, 50s, 1960s, 60s


Tess Porter
16
 

Access Series: Photo Quest in a Sculpture Garden

Get out on a sunny day and enjoy an art sculpture garden with friends...Wander with a purpose. In this teen group quest, teams use close-up photo prompts to find artworks in a sculpture garden, and then use tablet devices to take team photos with the sculptures. This activity was originally used in the Hirshhorn Sculpture Garden in Washington, D.C. with the All Access Digital Arts Program as a photo scavenger hunt. Example PDFs of photo details are provided. To turn the photo hunt into a more formal learning experience, the answer section shows the entire sculpture with information and discussion prompts to elicit questions about teen identity and self-expression.

Tags: decision-making, self-determination, student empowerment, disability, All Access Digital Arts Program

Tracie Spinale
33
 

Bracero Program: Unveiling Stories

In this activity, students will examine photographs documenting the Bracero Program, the largest guest-worker program in US history. Started in 1942 as a temporary war measure to address labor demands in agriculture and railroads, the program allowed Mexican nationals to take temporary agricultural work in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, California, and 24 other states. By the time the program ended in 1964, over 4.6 million contracts were awarded.

Using two Project Zero Global Thinking Routines - "Unveiling Stories" and "The 3 Ys" - students will analyze the stories these photographs tell about the experiences of braceros in this program, and the impact of these stories in multiple contexts. Additional resources (primary sources, a digital exhibition, and an article) and information on how to use these routines in the classroom can by found by clicking Read More ».

Keywords: mexican, immigration, work, migration, migrant workers, agriculture, reform, politics, government, leonard nadel, photojournalism, activity, inquiry strategy, global competency, global competence, latino, chicano, California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Arkansas, 1940s, 40s, 1950s, 50s, 1960s, 60s

#LatinoHAC

Tess Porter
36
 

Key Moments in WWII: What makes you say that?

Using the Project Zero Visible Thinking routine "What makes you say that?," students will investigate two photographs, taken from different angles, of Japanese Foreign Minister Mamoru Shigemitsu and General Yoshijiro Umezu aboard the USS Missouri as they signed the surrender that would officially end WWII.

Keywords: world war 2, world war ii, general macarthur, carl mydans, primary source, ww2, japanese instrument of surrender, potsdam declaration, inquiry strategy

#visiblethinking

Tess Porter
4
 

Foreigners in Japan, 1860-1861

Using the Project Zero Visible Thinking routine "What makes you say that?", students will examine Japanese artworks depicting Americans and other "westerners" in Japan to analyze Japanese views towards foreigners in the period after the signing of the Kanagawa Treaty (1854). The Kanagawa Treaty, the first treaty between the United States and Japan, ended a period of Japanese isolationism that had lasted for 220 years. Collection includes 21 woodblock prints from the years 1860-1861.

Keywords: commodore perry, matthew perry, treaty of amity and commerce, townsend harris, national seclusion, sakoku, millard filmore, edo period, treaty of amity and peace, harris treaty, inquiry strategy, foreigner, global perspectives

#historicalthinking

Tess Porter
24
 

Achelous and Hercules: What makes you say that?

Using the Project Zero Visible Thinking routine "What makes you say that?," students will examine the 1947 mural "Achelous and Hercules," by Thomas Hart Benton. This artwork explores the relationship between man and water in post-war agricultural America through the retelling of an Ancient Greek myth. Collection includes a video analysis by a museum director and an interactive exploring areas of interest in the artwork.

Tags: greece; agriculture; agricultural; missouri river; marshall plan; truman; cultural connections; midwest

Tess Porter
4
 

Structure & Function

Learn how animals have external structures that function to support survival and behavior.

SmithsonianScienceAshley
12
 

Ancient Egyptian Stelae: See Think Wonder

Using the Project Zero Visible Thinking routine "See Think Wonder," this activity explores multiple stelae, or funerary markers, from Ancient Egypt. Through analysis of these stelae, students will gain an understanding of: the different functions of stelae, their common characteristics, and how they fit into the larger picture of Ancient Egyptian funerary practice and afterlife beliefs.

Keywords: stela, stele, steles, stelai, memorial, commemorative, inquiry strategy, archaeology

#historicalthinking

Tess Porter
5
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