Found 299 Learning Lab Collections
A collection of images focusing on the Native Americans and their vanishing cultures due to Manifest Destiny.
Bowling Green High School, Bowling Green, KY
Grade levels: 9-12
11th grade American Literature Focus for English Second Language Learners
Lesson Time: 50 minutes
1. Show the students a copy of the painting “Westward the Course of Empire Makes Its Way” by Emanuel Leutze (1861). Ask the students to spend a few moments observing the work in silence, noticing any details that draw their eyes. Ask the students to let their eyes touch every part of the canvas/picture.
2. Using the teaching strategy “See Think Wonder” ask the students to volunteer details in the work that they see. Ask them to describe only what they observe in the work (e.g. “I see a man in a fur hat holding a gun”). After the student makes a factual observation, ask the student “What do you see that makes you say that?” if the student says something that is not immediately obvious (e.g. the student sees a wooden sailing ship trapped in sea ice but describes it as a cabin). Do not correct the student. Let other students make observations and possibly correct each other through observation and discussion. After the student is satisfied with an observation, follow up with the question “What do you think about that?” Allow the student to offer any interpretations of what the detail means for the content of the work, the tone, the theme etc. Avoiding any value judgements, summarize back to the student his or her interpretation and evidential observations supplying any vocabulary the student might lack, asking for the student’s approval of the final summary. Continue this procedure until the students exhaust their observations or the class time restraints are reached. Finally, follow up with the question “What does this work (or specific observation) make you wonder about?”
3. At this point, ask the students to note anything that they do not see but would expect to be represented in the scene. Second Language Learners who have been in the USA for 2-3 years would probably have some general ideas about the history of the USA and may be able to offer such absences. If not, the teacher may need to point out that no Native Americans appear in the main scene. If the students do not notice the border of the work, point out that there are small scenes in the border that add content/connections to the main scene. Point out that two Native Americans appear there, small and crawling.
4. Ask the students to make a journal entry writing their thoughts about the work, specifically noting the Americans who are represented as moving across the land and the Americans who are not represented.
If the students have enough command of the language, the teacher can discuss representing fact versus propaganda. Discuss the painting as advertisement for the movement west despite its factual inaccuracies (e.g. the painting depicts California as visible from the Rocky Mountains although it is actually 1,200 miles away). Contrast this with a handbill distributed in the Dust Bowl areas advertising workers needed in California to pick crops (in reality the number of workers was greater than the jobs available). A possible literary connection could be to The Grapes of Wrath.
Use the painting periodically through the course of American Literature. Students’ reactions to the work may evolve as they expand their ideas of American history, manifest destiny, and the immigrant experience. Allow students to write new journal entries each time they revisit the work with new knowledge. Discuss the dialogue that gets created between the artist, the work, and the viewer based on what the viewer brings to the experience.
Objective: The student will be able to make a factual observation about the painting and offer interpretation (where possible) citing evidence from the work.
Follow-up lessons: On subsequent viewing of the work, the student will be able to identify themes in the painting that connect to texts from American Literature (e.g. attitude toward nature, the west, immigration, manifest destiny, etc.)
Rationale for using this artwork: The painting by Leutze encapsulates many themes that permeate American Literature and lends itself to an introduction to the course as well as an anchor for the course that will bear repeated viewing.
Rationale for the the methodology: The English as a Second Language student often does not bring a lot of background knowledge about American history or art. The See-Think-Wonder technique allows the student to engage with the work as an expert would: one who makes observations and interpretations that allow claims backed by evidence.
Differentiating Observation (fact) from Interpretation (opinion).
Making claims based on evidence.
Practice speaking in front of peers using the target language of English.
This teaching collection encourages students to think about all sides of an issue - in this case a cultural event - and then make connections to related issues of identity and nationalism locally, nationally, and internationally. The collection uses an article by Eduardo Díaz, director of the Smithsonian Latino Center, and Kevin Gover (Pawnee), director of the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian, as a jumping off point to explore changes to Santa Fe's annual Fiesta de Santa Fe, described by organizers as “the oldest, most colorful community celebration in the nation,” as part of an ongoing conversation across the country about how we choose to honor our "history, multicultural legacies and unique blend of traditions."
The exercise is scaffolded with global competence strategies to help students explore the Fiesta in successive detail, consider the various perspectives of the communities involved, and make connections to similar conversations happening across the US today. Students can share ideas in groups or through writing assignments, adding in outside research if desired.
Keywords: American Indian, Native American, Pueblo Indians, Hispanic, Latino, Entrada
This activity will be an opener for our Module on World War 2: Franklin Roosevelt and Yalta. Students will analyze a portrait using the 'puzzle activity' strategy to observe, describe, create questions and piece together the portrait. After the original portrait is revealed students will read informational text about the artist and portrait and answer the questions they generated during their activity. We will also be looking at Winston Churchill's portrait by the same artist.
This teacher's guide provides portraits and analysis questions to enrich students' examination of William Faulkner, an American author and Nobel Prize laureate. Includes the video "Defining Portraiture: How are portraits both fact and fiction?" and the National Portrait Gallery's "Reading" Portraiture Guide for Educators, both of which provide suggestions and questions for analyzing portraiture.
- What do these portraits have in common? How are they different?
- How are these portraits both fact and fiction?
- How do these portraits reflect how they wanted to be seen, or how others wanted them to be seen? Consider for what purpose these portraits were created (such as the caricature, stamp, etc.).
- Having read one of his stories, does the portrait capture your image of William Faulkner? Why, or why not?
- If you were creating your own portrait of William Faulkner, what characteristics would you emphasize, and why?
Keywords: mississippi, ms, the sound and the fury, writer
Each resource symbolizes a reason why Americans chose to move west. For each one, complete the following activity:
1) Source it: Is it a primary or secondary source? Who made it? When was it made? What is the author's purpose (PIE)? Hint- click the i on the left side of the screen to learn more about the source.
2) Identify at least 4 details that you see in the image.
3) Why would this resource motivate people to move West? Use a specific detail that you saw to prove your point.
Each resource symbolizes a reason why Americans chose to move west. For EACH one, complete the following activity:
1) Source it: What is it? Who made it? When was it made? What is the author's purpose/why was it made? Hint- click the i on the left side of the screen to learn more about the source.
2) Identify at least 3 details that you see in EACH image.
3) Why would this resource motivate people to move West? Use a specific detail that you saw to prove your point.
This is a collection of items belonging to, or about, Frances M. Albrier. Although an important female leader and activist during the mid-20th century, many students may not have heard of Ms. Albrier. Encourage students to act as history detectives, exploring the collection to determine why this woman's belongings are in the collections of the Smithsonian.
Some questions to consider:
- What are Albrier's main accomplishments? What types of occupations did she have?
- Based on these, what values do you think were important to her?
- How does Albrier's life reflect major changes for women during the 20th century? Changes for African-Americans?
- What do these items tell us about challenges facing African-American women in the mid-century?
- What remains unknown about Albrier based on this collection? Where else could you go to look for more information?
- Look at an encyclopedia entry for Ms. Albrier. Are there any events mentioned not covered in this collection? What might be a good item to add in order to better show her life?
tags: activism, civil rights, union, labor, voter registration, 60s, world war II, shipyards, WW2, nursing, Red Cross, National Council of Negro Women, Nigeria, independence, peace, moral rearmament
This collection is to support our 4th grade unit on immigration.
Our unit makes use of the Massachusetts Department of Education's lesson "America's Salad: The Story of Immigration to Massachusetts" and includes trips to the Tsongas Industrial History Center in Lowell for their program "Yankees and Immigrants" and to the Edward Kennedy Institute for the American Senate for their program "Pathways to Citizenship"
In class, we will explore why people leave their country, where they choose to settle (with a particular focus on Lowell, Massachusetts), and how they are welcomed. Students will explore how
In this activity, students will learn about the background and cultural significance of the holiday Kwanzaa through an an analysis of various resources:
- The collection begins with several images related to Kwanzaa. By looking through each of the resources, students can gain a deeper understanding of the holiday. Each image contains text about different parts of Kwanzaa and quiz questions to encourage further thoughts and reflections.
- A resource from the Kwanzaa Planning Committee is featured after these resources to further discuss practices and principles related to the holiday.
- Then, they will compare and contrast them with an image representing Christmas and another representing Hanukkah.
- The final activity has the student upload a separate image and explore how he or she would use that image to describe Kwanzaa to someone.
- The final resource includes an article from the Smithsonian Magazine that you can use to discuss the history of Kwanzaa with your class.
- The resources include multiple choice and discussion questions.
To read more information about Kwanzaa, please read the following official Kwanzaa website set up by the African American Cultural Center in Los Angeles, California: (http://www.officialkwanzaawebsite.org/symbols.shtm...).
Tags: holidays, history, culture, African American culture, African American history, American history, American culture
Context: A lesson for a U.S. History/American Literature humanities class. This lesson will come towards the end of our study of the Revolutionary period.
Essential Question: What does it mean to be an American in 1782?
- How does Crevecoeur define an American here? How accurate is his definition for that time period?
- To whom is Crevecouer making this appeal? What sort of person would be motivated by these passages?
- Who is included in Crevecoeur's appeal? Who is left out?
- How is "this new man" different?
- How does Crevecoeur help build the ideals and myths of America?
- How does this letter build on the idea of American Exceptionalism? America as the land of "new and improved"?
Students will have read Letter III before class.
Using the Smithsonian Learning Lab and the text excerpts below (or the entire text of Letter III), students will identify three key quotes or words and find artwork that connects to chosen text. Three total text excerpts and three works of art. The works of art can support, refute, or simply connect to some aspect of the quote and the idea of what it means to be an American.
Students will share their chosen artworks and quotes via the class Google classroom.
We will use the images as the basis for a class discussion on what it means to be an American.
After the class discussion, students will write a short paper on "What is an American?"
1.. Using the Smithsonian Learning Lab and the text excerpts below (or the entire text of Letter III), identify three key quotes or words and find artwork that connects to chosen text. You can use the images below as a starting point, but don't feel limited to these. The Smithsonian has an amazing and extensive collection. Take time to use the search function and explore the collection. You have all period to do so. Be original.
2. By class tomorrow, post on the google classroom your text excerpts and accompanying three works of art. The text can be a whole sentence or just a few key words. The works of art can support, refute, or simply connect to some aspect of the text and the idea of what it means to be an American. Be sure to include the title, artist, and date for each artwork. Your artwork doesn't have to come from the Revolutionary time period. The important thing is that you use your critical reading and thinking skills to make a connection between the text and the art work.
3. Tomorrow we will have a class discussion based on the images and excerpts. Be prepared to share your thinking on your choices with the class.
As always, remember to consider speaker, audience, and purpose. Who is speaking? To whom is he appealing? Why?
Not sure where to start? Find what you think are the ten most important words in the passage. Narrow it down to the top three.
Based on our studies so far, what are the different groups, ethnicities, races, religious affiliations make up the population at this time? Which of these does Crevecouer include? Leave out?
How did these people come to be in America? Does that matter in Crevecouer's writing?
by J. Hector St. John De Crevecoeur
"What then is the American, this new man?...He is an American, who, leaving
behind him all his ancient prejudices and manners, receives new ones from the new
mode of life he has embraced, the new government he obeys, and the new rank he holds. He has
become an American by being received in the broad lap of our great Alma Mater.
Here individuals of all races are melted into a new race of man, whose labors
and posterity will one day cause great changes in the world. Americans are the
"After a foreigner from any part of Europe is arrived, and become a citizen; let him devoutly listen to the voice of our great parent, which says to him, "Welcome to my shores, distressed European; bless the hour in which thou didst see my verdant fields, my fair navigable rivers, and my green mountains!--If thou wilt work, I have bread for thee; if thou wilt be honest, sober, and industrious, I have greater rewards to confer on thee--ease and independence. I will give thee fields to feed and clothe thee; a comfortable fireside to sit by, and tell thy children by what means thou hast prospered; and a decent bed to repose on. I shall endow thee beside with the immunities of a freeman. If thou wilt carefully educate thy children, teach them gratitude to God, and reverence to that government, that philanthropic government, which has collected here so many men and made them happy. I will also provide for thy progeny; and to every good man this ought to be the most holy, the most powerful, the most earnest wish he can possibly form, as well as the most consolatory prospect when he dies. Go thou and work and till; thou shalt prosper, provided thou be just, grateful, and industrious" (Letter III, 1782).
Westward the Course of Empire Takes Its Way
What does the weather do to the ocean currents?
Ocean water and currents affect the climate. It takes a greater amount of energy to change the temperature of water than land or air; water warms up and cools off much slower than land or air does. As a result, inland climates are subject to more extreme temperature ranges than coastal climates, which are insulated by nearby water. Over half the heat that reaches the earth from the sun is absorbed by the ocean's surface layer, so surface currents move a lot of heat. Currents that originate near the equator are warm; currents that flow from the poles are cold.
The Great Ocean Conveyor Belt
The great ocean conveyor belt is an example of a density-driven current. These are also called thermohaline currents, because they are forced by differences in temperature or salinity, which affect the density of the water.
The great ocean conveyor belt begins as the coolest of all currents - literally. At the beginning of the conveyor belt:
The Gulf Stream delivers warm, and relatively salty, surface waters north to the Norwegian Sea. There the water gives up its heat to the atmosphere, especially during the frigidly cold winters. The surface waters cool to near freezing temperatures, at which time they become denser than the waters below them and sink. This process continues making cold water so dense that it sinks all the way to the bottom of the ocean.
During this time, the Gulf Stream continues to deliver warm water to the Norwegian Sea on the surface. The water can't very well pile up in the Norwegian Sea, so the deep cold water flows southward. It continues to flow southward, passing the Equator, until it enters the bottom of the Antarctic Circumpolar current. It then drifts around Africa and Australia, until it seeps northward into the bottom of the Pacific.
This collection serves as an introduction to the opening panel of the 2018 Smithsonian-Montgomery College Faculty Fellowship Program. This year's theme is “We the People: America’s Grand and Radical Experiment with Democracy.” The title for the opening panel is "The Smithsonian Institution: “A Community of Learning and the Opener of Doors.”
Four Smithsonian staff members will present, including Richard Kurin (SI Distinguished Scholar and Ambassador-at-Large, Office of the Secretary), Jessica Johnson (Digital Engagement Producer, National Museum of African American History and Culture), Lisa Sasaki (Director, Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center), and Chris Wilson (Director, Program in African American Culture, National Museum of American History). Their bios, presentation descriptions, and other resources are included here.
This lesson works best for 8th grade U.S. History, after students have learned how the original plan for government (the Articles of Confederation) was failing the newly independent America and how the state delegates met in the summer of 1787 to correct these failings and ended up writing a new Constitution.
Students start by using the VTS thinking routine to examine Preamble by Mike Wilkins, an engaging and accessible way to 'read' the Preamble of the U.S. Constitution.
After 'decoding' the words and noticing all the details they can, students use a handout to analyze the language of the actual Preamble and discuss word choice and intended meaning (they might also look at the photo of the actual Constitution at this point to compare the original with Mike WIlkins' work).
They then read and analyze 4 quotes from The Federalist Papers defending the Constitution to the states who were about to vote to ratify it as a jumping off point to discuss what the Constitution was meant to achieve for the newly formed states. Discussion about reasons why states would not want to join this union will also add to the understanding of what was at stake for each state. In addition, looking at a graphic organizer showing state and federal powers under this plan for government will help students see how this system divides power between the states and the national government.
Students then return to the original artwork, and decide if analysis of the meaning of the Preamble and the ideals of the Constitution affect how students 'see' the artwork. Using the 'connect/extend/challenge' visual routine, teachers can record what the students connected to, what new ideas pushed their thinking in different directions, and what is still challenging or confusing about the artwork or the Preamble.
Some possible extension ideas are included in the collection to highlight the differences between the states as well as their similarities/unity, such as creating another artwork using an excerpt from the Declaration of Independence (while adhering to state DMV rules for vanity plates), and comparing front pages of different states' daily newspapers. #SAAMteach
In this collection, students will learn about Asian American history in Austin. Austin is home to many Asian Americans along with their rich history, culture, and traditions that are preserved and passed on to future generations by their families and communities. This exhibit showcases some of the history that is lesser known but nevertheless important to document and remember. All of the images can be found at the Austin History Center, which houses an Asian American Archival Collection of manuscript collections, photographs, clippings, books, periodicals and other items.
This exhibit was developed by the City of Austin's Asian American Resource Center and the Austin History Center.
Educators and students may use this online exhibit to supplement Texas History lessons and as a supplement to the full exhibit stored at the City of Austin's Asian American Resource Center (AARC). Currently, Waves of Hope is not on display at the AARC. Please contact the site at 512-974-1700 or email@example.com with any questions.
keywords: texas history, asian american, Texas asians, austin, austin history, austin history center, immigration
This teacher's guide provides portraits and analysis questions to enrich students' examination of Walt Whitman, an American poet, essayist, and journalist. Includes the video "Defining Portraiture: How are portraits both fact and fiction?" and the National Portrait Gallery's "Reading" Portraiture Guide for Educators, both of which provide suggestions and questions for analyzing portraiture. Also includes "A Close, Intimate Look at Walt Whitman," an article about the final portrait in this collection that may be used as a lesson extension.
- What do these portraits have in common? How are they different?
- How are these portraits both fact and fiction?
- How do these portraits reflect how he wanted to be seen, or how others wanted him to be seen? Consider for what purpose these portraits were created.
- Having read one of his poems, does the portrait capture your image of Walt Whitman? Why, or why not?
- If you were creating your own portrait of Walt Whitman, what characteristics would you emphasize, and why?
Keywords: new york, ny, leaves of grass, humanist, writer
In Voices of Social Justice, students will learn about some of the major figures who struggled to obtain civil rights for disenfranchised or marginalized groups. They will listen to stories of social justice and analyze portraits of individuals who broke barriers——from key nineteenth-century reformers to modern leaders—and will likely be encouraged to consider how they, too, can become civically engaged.
Intro to Nutrition is a 3 credit, non-lab science in the General Education curriculum at Montgomery College in Rockville, Maryland, USA.
Scientists rely on observation to help them identify patterns and to formulate their hypotheses. These three looking activities help students to develop more effective looking, thinking and questioning skills. These skills will serve them in this science class and in their lives outside the classroom, as well.
Exercise #1: Students are presented with two still life portraits from the 19th century. The first is by German American artist Severin Roese in 1852 and the second by Everhart Kuhn, in 1865. Working in small groups students use the SEE-THINK-WONDER routine to discuss and record the similarities and differences they can identify. They share out to the larger group their findings to see if others saw the paintings differently.
Exercise #2: Students examine one of the two paintings, either Still Life #12 (1962) by Tom Wesselmann or Breakfast Tacos (2003) by Chuck Ramirez. This exercise employs the WHAT MAKES YOU SAY THAT routine from Project Zero.
This collection supports the January 2017 Google Hangout facilitated by the National Portrait Gallery in coordination with the Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access.
Teachers looking to foster in their students a broader understanding and appreciation of today’s complex world can use these Learning Lab collections that pair Harvard’s Project Zero Global Thinking Routines with new bilingual Latino-content videos of National Portrait Gallery and Smithsonian American Art Museum curators discussing works in the collection.
Each Learning Lab teaching collection includes additional supporting materials to add dimension, expand the activity, and deepen students' learning.
These four videos were created with federal support from the Latino Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Latino Center.
Upward Bound Tech & Tour - Intro to the Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access' Learning Lab
Taking a great portrait is more than just taking a quick snap of a face. It requires thoughtful contemplation and a variety of choices by the photographer. We'll examine a collection of photographs that illustrate various principles of portrait photography and that will help students to understand the parts of a digital artifact.
LENS 1 | One lens to consider when looking at an artifact is its context and the impression it gives you. Using "see, think, wonder" strategies, we consider:
- What do you see?
- What do you think about it?
- What makes you say that -- what evidence is there for that - on what are you basing your opinion?
- What does it make you wonder?
- Why does something look the way it does or the way it is?
LENS 2 | Analyzing great photographs to provide inspiration for your own photography pursuits
What makes a strong image?
- angles (eye-level, high angle, low angle, and bird's eye);
- light and shadow;
- shot length (long-shot, medium-shot, close-up, & extreme close-up);
- mood--capturing a feeling or emotion in a photograph;
- scale--how big or small subjects look; and
- sense of place--capturing the feeling of a place.
Click into each photo and on the "paper clip" annotation icon to read more information (metadata!)
We will then discuss publishing guidelines and other policies that will help students make their best collections.
Tags: portrait photography, decision-making, self-determination, student empowerment, Project Zero
Students will analyze Sol LeWitt's variations of the open cube to apply their knowledge of drawing cubes using isometric paper and nets of cubes. Students will extend their knowledge of surface area while observing LeWitt's Cube without a cube and make a generalization for two formulas.
This is an activity for a grade 6 or 7 geometry class. Prerequisite knowledge: volume, surface area and nets of cubes.
Students can do the work in groups of 2-3 there are sections for thinking routines and prompts for students to upload photos of their work.