Found 480 Learning Lab Collections
- How can we learn more about history through a photograph?
- How do social factors, such as racism, influence change?
- How much power do American citizens have to change government policies?
- What factors drove the Jim Crow era and segregation after the Civil War?
- How did Americans push back against discrimination, specifically segregation, and fight for civil rights?
This series of lessons is designed as a broad introduction to the factors leading up to the Civil Rights Movement. Students will look closely at the 13th, 4th, and 15th amendments to the Constitution. Students will then explore some of the factors leading to and consequences of the rise of segregated America during the Jim Crow era in the years following the Civil War. They will look closely at powerful images that exemplify some of the Jim Crow laws, and then explore some of the court cases and responses of citizens that helped to bring about some changes leading up to and during the Civil Rights Movement in the United States.
Time: 3-4 class periods with optional maker project assessment.
Anticipatory set: Have students complete a chalk talk to unravel their definitions of equality vs. racism. Discuss and formally define equality and racism.
Looking closely: Share the image of the water fountains and notice similarities and differences (Optional opportunity to use the See - Think - Wonder thinking routine). Discuss context of Jim Crow era and explain we will be exploring what factors led to these laws and how people fought to change them.
Have students look closely at the 13th, 14th, and 15th amendments and dissect the language of the amendments to understand their meaning using the Parts, Purposes, Messages thinking routine. Read page one of iCivics Jim Crow handout. Students should record examples of equality and racism on post it notes as they read. When finished, they can add these post it notes to the chalk talk posters with definitions of equality and racism as they discuss their examples.
Anticipatory set: Use the Imagine if... thinking routine to have groups of students explore challenging Jim Crow era issues.
Looking closely: Read "Jim Crow and the Great Migration" and have students continue to record examples of equality vs. racism on post it notes to add to the chalk talk posters from yesterday. Explore powerful Jim Crow images with a chalk talk using the Reporter's Notebook thinking routine.
Discuss how some people began to speak out against the injustices of the Jim Crow laws, both directly and indirectly. Compare and contrast the approaches of Booker T. Washington and W. E. B. Du Bois. Then read "I, too" by Langston Hughes. Students should complete the See/Hear - Think - Wonder during their first listen. Then students can deconstruct the poem in groups, paying attention to both the literal and figurative meaning of the metaphor of the kitchen in the poem.
Exit ticket/Reflection: What are the multiple meanings of the kitchen in the poem, "I, too," by Langston Hughes? What was his purpose for writing this poem?
Anticipatory set: Use the Making it Fair: Now, Then, Later thinking routine to start to identify how people could have made these Jim Crow restrictions more fair.
Looking closely: Read "The Road to Civil Rights" handout from iCivics. Students can add equality vs. racism post its to their original chalk talks. Watch the video of the sit-in reenactment (optional - reenact a sit-in in the classroom). Look closely at images of marches, sit-ins, boycotts, and court cases and use the Reporter's Notebook thinking routine to notice the layers of interactions during the events.
Optional assessment: Introduce the Journey to Civil Rights maker project. Allow students 3-4 days to work on their artifacts and essay explaining their choices.
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 explores the cultural and historical significance of two diplomatic missions by Hawaiian King Kalākaua and Queen Kapi'olani to the United States. These 19th-century diplomatic missions established the first state dinner hosted by U.S. President Grant and included the gifting of a canoe from Queen Kapi'olani to the Smithsonian. Students can watch a video interview about this history and answer guided questions, then look closely and analyze portraits of the monarchs, read more about the history of U.S. state dinners, and learn about the contemporary collaborations curators have with community members to reveal the history of objects, as described in the film.
This Smithsonian Learning Lab collection received Federal support from the Asian Pacific American Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center.
Tags: Hawaii, Kapiolani, Kalakaua, outrigger canoe, wa'a, diplomacy
Developing an inquiry-based strategy to support students can allow them to investigate objects and images as historians do. In this example, students try to reveal the story behind the image. They raise questions for their own further research. Because the image has only a title, the photographer's name, the "sitter"'s name, the place and the date, students have to rely on their own analysis of evidence in the image, rather than someone else's interpretation. When they read the expert's analysis, they will have already considered many of the elements that the expert highlights and can compare their interpretations.
"Girl at Gee's Bend, Alabama" is a provocative photograph that can be used in discussions ranging from history of the South during the Great Depression, to social justice.
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 "Reading" Portraiture Guide for Educators, 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.
- How is this portrait both fact and fiction?
- 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.
- Having read one of her stories, does the portrait capture your image of Eudora Welty? Why, or why not?
- If you were creating your own portrait of Eudora Welty, what characteristics would you emphasize, and why?
Keywords: mississippi, ms, story, optimist's daughter, writer, #BecauseOfHerStory
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, #BecauseOfHerStory
First formed in 1951, the Allegheny County Chapter of the Pennsylvania Association for Retarded Children (ACC-PARC) was established as a grassroots organization comprised of the parents of people with disabilities. The aspect of ACC-PARC’s daily activities most represented in these records are the efforts of the association to investigate the treatment of people with disabilities at residential care facilities in Western Pennsylvania during the 1960s and 1970s.
This Learning Lab collection is designed to highlight the specific steps taken by the parents and members of ACC-PARC as they advocated for change in residential care facilities in this region. Each document illuminates a specific step or tactic used by the parents as they attempted to raise awareness of poor treatment of people with disabilities, stop overcrowding and under-staffing in facilities, and push for legislation to ensure the well-being of residents.
This archival collection and the materials presented in this Learning Lab collection are housed at the Detre Library and Archives at the Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh, PA:
Title: Bob Nelkin Collection of Allegheny County Chapter of the Pennsylvania Association for Retarded Children (ACC-PARC) Records
Creator: Nelkin, Bob
Catalog Number: MSS 1002
This collection compares and contrasts the portraits of Eleanor Roosevelt and Marian Anderson, and explores the struggles Anderson experienced as a person of color in America and the dynamics of white privilege and race relations.
This collection was created in conjunction with the National Portrait Gallery's 2018 Learning to Look Summer Teacher Institute.
1. How are Native American groups defined by cultural practices?
2. How does the environment impact the culture of the people living in a region?
In this collection, students will analyze, compare, and contrast the similarities and differences of the cultures of Native American groups living in the northwest and northeast regions with a focus on food, crops, and natural resources, understanding how the environment influenced the cultures and traditions of Native American people.
American Indian Essential Understandings (Written by the National Museum of the American Indian Native Knowledge 360 https://americanindian.si.edu/...):
1. Culture is a result of human socialization. People acquire knowledge and values by interacting with other people through common language, place, and community. In the Americas, there is vast cultural diversity among more than 2,000 tribal groups. Tribes have unique cultures and ways of life that span history from time immemorial to the present day.
- There is no single American Indian culture or language.
- American Indians are both individuals and members of a tribal group.
- American Indians share many similarities with other indigenous people of the world, along with many differences.
2. For thousands of years, indigenous people have studied, managed, honored, and thrived in their homelands. These foundations continue to influence American Indian relationships and interactions with the land today.
- The story of American Indians in the Western Hemisphere is intricately intertwined with places and environments. Native knowledge systems resulted from long-term occupation of tribal homelands, and observation and interaction with places. American Indians understood and valued the relationship between local environments and cultural traditions, and recognized that human beings are part of the environment.
Time: 3 class periods
Anticipatory set: Begin by viewing the “Food and Cultures Video” from the Pacific Northwest History and Cultures online lesson. Students should use the “Add 1” thinking routine after viewing to note the important take aways. After discussing, students can make a connection to their own cultural practices by writing about the foods they eat in their cultures.
Looking closely: Students can then read the essay written by Shana Brown to extend their understanding about the connections between foods and culture. Students should annotate the article using post-it notes to record connections, challenges, concepts, and changes to their thinking. They can then place them on a class 4 C’s poster to share out their learning during discussion. Students should explore the three case studies, using the annotation tools while they read to look closely at objects, images, and quotes. They can use the student handout to complete a case study analysis and support a claim that “Salmon is important to Native Peoples and Nations of the Pacific Northwest” with evidence from their exploration. Students can then read “People of the Potlatch” and represent the cultural practice of the potlatch with the “Colour, Symbol, Image” thinking routine.
Anticipatory set: Assign students sections of the Haudenosaunee Thanksgiving Address to read aloud. When students have read the address, have them complete the “Step Inside” thinking routine about giving thanks from the perspective of a Haudenosaunee American Indian person.
Looking closely: Students can read excerpts from the “HAUDENOSAUNEE GUIDE FOR EDUCATORS” with a focus on “Who are the Haudenosaunee” and “The Relationship to the Natural World,” and/or the “Celebration of Native American Food” article and create headlines for the most important information for each or all selections. When finished with the readings, students should complete the claims and evidence organizer to identify which foods were important to the Haudenosaunee people based on evidence from the text.
Anticipatory set: Students should work together complete a Venn Diagram sort to compare and contrast Northwest and Northeast cultural practices/foods as review.
Looking closely: Students will construct a compare and contrast writing explaining how the environment influenced the culture of American Indian people of the Northwest and Northeast regions using evidence they have gathered to support their thinking.
American Indian Nations: Kwakwaka’wakw, Haudenosaunee, Cayuga, Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Seneca, Tuscarora
This teaching collection is designed to be used in the Frost Art Museum's "Exploring Latinx Artists from the Frost Art Museum Collection" workshop on November 6, 2018, to guide participants in a looking activity and to demonstrate the range of tools available in the Learning Lab.
It is adapted from a teaching collection on the same theme (Luis Cruz Azaceta's "Shifting States: Iraq" http://learninglab.si.edu/q/ll...) , which aims to help students think critically and globally using two Thinking Routines to explore the painting. The work is a metaphorical representation of the unrest taking place in Iraq, and more broadly, an exploration of the human condition during times of crisis.
Included here are an image of the work from the Smithsonian American Art Museum, an explanatory video with curator E. Carmen Ramos, a contextual video featuring the artist himself, three suggested Thinking Routines - "Colors, Shapes, Lines," "The 3 Y's," and "Headlines" - from Harvard's Project Zero Artful Thinking and Global Thinking materials, three other works by Azaceta in the Smithsonian collections, and an array of prompts and Learning Lab tools.
For use in Social Studies, Spanish, English, American History, Art History classes
This program received Federal support from the Latino Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Latino Center.
This Learning Lab uses interactive virtual tours, videos, images, and much more to Celebrate the Rich Cultural History of African American History in honor or Black History Month.
Students can explore this Learning Lab independently. Learning exercises and worksheets have been provided to help enhance the exploration of the content for the NMAAHC Black Superheroes
Wakanda Learning Lab is this? #SJ2019LP
View selected prints of different places, then discuss:
- What is the first thing you notice?
- What do you believe is special about this place?
- How did the artist use composition to highlight what is special?
Choose one print to examine:
- What kinds of lines, patterns or textures did the artist use?
- How did the artist use tools to create areas of light and dark?
Apply in your own work:
- What makes a place special or meaningful to you?
- What clues will help capture the uniqueness of your special place?
- Draw a picture of a special place using foreground, middle ground, and background. Use a variety of lines and cross hatching to create texture and value.
- Sketch your special place, then transfer the design to a soft rubber printing plate. Using a lino cutter, outline the major areas and cut away areas that will remain light. Use a variety of lines and cross hatching to create areas of light and dark in the prints. Ink your printing plate and pull several prints.
- Create a painting of a special place using foreground, middle ground, and background. Mix tints and shades. Use color to communicate an emotion linked to your special place.
Meet the politicians, reformers, inventors, authors, soldiers and others who shaped the course of American history from the colonial era to the end of the Civil War. Students will analyze portraits to learn about the diverse and significant contributions to American society made by individuals in the Portrait Gallery’s collection.
The Angel Island Immigration Station operated as one of the immigrant induction processing centers for the Western United States from 1910 to 1940. The following activities will help learners explore the experiences of the various immigrants that were detained at Angel Island and the process they endured in their attempt to gain access to America.
Upon completing the lesson, students will be able to:
- Use rhetorical thinking to analyze a poem.
- Analyze the perspective shared in a poem, a primary source document.
- Engage in a "Text Talk," by coming to a discussion prepared after annotating a poem.
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. This is a collection of photographs that illustrate various principles of portrait photography: angles (eye-level, high angle, low angle, and bird's eye), light and shadow, framing, and shot length (long-shot, medium-shot, close-up, & extreme close-up); As well as 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 and complete challenges.
Tags: portrait photography, decision-making, self-determination, student empowerment, disability, All Access Digital Arts Program
All Access Digital Arts Camp (plans and activities for teens with cognitive and intellectual disabilities)
SCLDA's All Access Digital Arts Program (2012-2016) provided skill-building opportunities in digital arts and communications, creative expression, and social inclusion to a spectrum of teen learners in the Washington, DC metro area. Participating youth visited Smithsonian science, history, and art museums, created digital and physical artworks based upon a tailored curriculum, engaged in social interactions online and in-person, gained digital literacy skills, and developed friendships with other teens.
Through once-per-month club outreach activities and summer intensive camps and workshops, students were exposed to communication, collaborative learning, research, and problem solving. The program served up to 20 youth per session, ages 14 through 22 with cognitive and intellectual disabilities. The youth experienced skill-building, leadership opportunities, and social integration through Smithsonian resources, socialization opportunities, and computer skills. Youth participated in 1.) One- and two-week multi-media digital arts workshops whose outcome was student-produced artworks, songs, and movies that were shared with family and friends at openings and online via a social network; and 2.) club activities--to build upon skills developed during the summer, and maintain social connections.
At the Access Summer Camp workshops, teens learn to tell their own stories through digital arts and media. They focused on a specific story to tell based upon their interests. Content for their artistic self-expressions took the form of printed digital portraits and “sonic self-portrait” digital music compositions, as well as documentary iMovies. Teens toured Smithsonian museums, visited exhibitions and interviewed curators and educators, as well as conducted internet research. Teens ate lunch together and socialized during game breaks. Volunteers worked with teens to provide individual supports and facilitate the experience. Smithsonian educators and neurotypical teen youth mentors guided Access teens to edit their content using photo, sound, and movie editing software. The movies, portraits, and songs premiered at the Hirshhorn Museum’s ARTLAB+ for family and friends, with teens themselves providing introductory remarks for their artworks. Each teen received a certificate of completion, a digital copy of their artwork, and a framed self-portrait. An evaluation session on the final day of the workshops allowed teens to express their thoughts to the workshop organizers.
How do contemporary artists grapple with the under- and misrepresentation of certain minorities in portraiture and American history? Participants will explore the newly unveiled portraits of President Barack Obama by Kehinde Wiley and former First Lady Michelle Obama by Amy Sherald and discuss how these artists are looking to the past to paint the present. After close reading these images, participants will consider how artists Ken Gonzales-Day and Titus Kaphar, in the exhibition “UnSeen: Our Past in a New Light,” uncover voices previously unheard.
This Learning Lab Collection is designed for students who are studying Korean. Students will explore Korean art from the Freer collection, and learn more about Korean culture, history, and tradition by using artworks. Through the exploring art and learning Korean process, student will develop a greater understanding of the unique aspects of Korean culture and the structure of Korean language.
Keywords: Korean, Language, Art, Culture, Tradition
This Learning Lab Collection is following Virginia Department of Education Standards of Learning for World Language: Non-Roman Alphabet Language for character-based language. Click here to find more information (p. 29-46)
Level 1: Students begin to develop communicative competence in the target language and expand their understanding of the culture(s) of the people who speak the language.
Level 2: Students continue to develop their communicative and cultural competence by interacting orally and in writing with other speakers of the target language, understanding oral and written messages in the language, and making oral and written presentations in the language.
Level 3: Students communicate on a variety of topics at a level commensurate with their study, using structures that are more complex in the language and moving from concrete to more abstract concepts in a variety of time frames.
Level 4: Students continue to develop their communicative and culture competence in the interpersonal, interpretive, and presentational modes of communication.
Level 5: Students are able to exchange and support opinions on a variety of topics related to historical and contemporary events and issues at a proficiency level commensurate with their study.
The Goryeo period (918-1392) is referred to as Korea’s age of enlightenment, when arts and cultures flourished under the patronage of the Goryeo aristocracy. Buddhism was the official state religion, which Buddhist temples and members of the royal court committed a huge portion of their resources to the practice of faith and to the creation of ritual implements and artworks as expressions of devotion.
Tremendous ceramics, lacquer wares, Buddhist paintings and sculptures, illustrated manuscripts, and metal crafts in Buddhist symbols and motifs were made during this period. The Goryeo period is widely known as the jade-green glazed, graceful shape, elegant floral motifs and decorative inlaid design celadons to the Western culture.
This Learning Lab Collection is created for Summer Institute for Educators, Discovering Korea's Past: Interdisciplinary Connections.
Keywords: Korea, Goryeo, Celadon, Buddhism, Inlay, Jade-green, Glazed, Ceramics
Use these pictures to help your child make careful observations of their world and use words to describe what they think and wonder about. This collection is meant to stimulate curiosity and develop vocabulary with the youngest learners. There are conversation starters among the images, but be sure to let the child's interest and your own questions drive the discussion.
Combine these images with real-world examples from your child's books, toys, or your own community. If you're interested in learning more about an individual image, click on the "i" icon located in the top left to view the museum description.
This has been adapted from the Project Zero's “See Think Wonder" Visible Thinking routine, meant for exploring works of art and other interesting things.
A free printable version is included at the end of the collection.
Allow small groups to "look/think/wonder" about a mask image: Look and describe what you see. Based on what you see, what do you think the mask is for? What do you wonder about the mask (or want to learn about the mask)? Then allow students to click the Information button to learn more. Groups can report out to the whole class.
Facilitate a discussion with students using some open ended questions:
- Why do people make and wear masks?
- What can be hidden or revealed using a mask?
- What might a mask symbolize or stand for?
- If you were to design a mask for a special purpose, what would it look like?
Direct students to sketch their ideas to plan for creating a mask.
Clarice Daley served as a nurse in the First World War (1914-1918) with the Australian Army Nursing Service.
Keywords: women, history, military,
Trevor Paglen: Sites Unseen combines the disciplines of art, science, and investigative journalism to bring unseen and, at times, unsettling elements of our contemporary world to light. Zooming outward from personal, to local, and finally global implications of this work, participants will work collaboratively to identify extensions and troubleshoot any challenges of this content for the classroom.
All Grade Levels
Considering the growing popularity of the graphic novel, could they be a venue for your students to explore and express identity? This collection offers interactive activities that incorporate building the structure of comic book and graphic novel pages. Utilizing the special exhibition Eye to I: Self-Portraits from 1900 to Today, this workshop takes a close look at self-portraiture as a means of exploring identity. The ideas here were presented by Sean Murphy, art teacher at Samuel Tucker Elementary School, in Fall 2018 and Spring 2019.