Found 335 Learning Lab Collections
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.
According to the Poetry Foundation, "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"
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.
tags: creative writing, art, poetry, poems
Edward Hicks' paintings reflect the same quality and style. More advanced in technique than Grandma Moses but still simple if compared to the work of the Hudson Valley School.
Open educational resources (OERs) are learning materials that can be modified and enhanced because their creators have given others permission to do so. The individuals or organizations that create OERs—which can include materials like presentation slides, lesson plans, lecture videos, and even entire textbooks. Some educators suggest that OERs might help reduce costs associated with producing and distributing course materials in both primary and secondary educational institutions. Teachers can download these materials—often at low costs—for use in their classrooms, but they can also update these materials and share their contributions with others, keeping content timely, relevant, and accurate. In this way, they needn't wait for textbook companies to issue entirely new editions of their (traditionally copyrighted) learning materials.
Here is a collection of works and resources that demonstrate examples of the beginnings of Recycling, as well as the various ways in which this practice is being utilized today.
This is a lesson designed for a teacher workshop on using Thinking Routines to spark curiosity and a desire to explore topics in depth. The estimated length of the workshop is 45 minutes, although there are extensions to the learning that could easily double that time (see below).
The first step is to engage in slow looking with the image. I will project it on a screen and we will get close in order to see all of the details. It's a dense image, with copious detail. I'll ask the teachers to look closely, noting where their eyes go, what they focus on.
Once we have had time to scan the image a few times, I'll introduce the See-Wonder-Connect Thinking Routine. See the next resource for the sequencing of questions. For the connect in this instance, I'll ask: How does this painting's subject matter connect to topics you teach, or that are taught in your school?
After completing the Thinking Routine, I'll reveal the title, Manifest Destiny, and ask for reactions to it. Why would Rockman choose that title? What do you think the artist is trying to say?
I'll give some background information about the artist and the painting. There are resources posted that give further information.
The teachers will go back to small groups at tables and brainstorm further how the image (or perhaps another image) could be used in their own context.
The lesson can be extended in a variety of ways. It can be a kick-off to an interdisciplinary study of various issues raised by the small groups, for example. I've used the 3Ys Global Thinking Routine to evaluate the significance of the various issues. Following the 3Ys, I then ask: How can you go more deeply with this topic? What more do you need to learn?
This image is a strong example of an artist's response to contemporary issues. One can't understand the potential impact of global warming without knowledge of science. In that way, it offers great potential for interdisciplinary exploration. But it could also connect to dystopian views in art (literature, visual art, etc.); artistic responses to the contemporary world; the ephemerality of human creations; etc.
What is global competence? What are the skills and dispositions of globally competent students? What role can art play in educating students for global competence? Teachers can use this Learning Lab Collection as a resource for students to explore themes of global importance in the arts of Asia. The Collection features two works of contemporary Asian art at the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery with several tools for students to examine and reflect about the works of art, such as Visible Thinking Routines, Artful Thinking Routines, or Global Thinking Routines. For each routine, the rationale and process is described to help the teacher practice. The Collection also includes artist interviews and other contextual information about the works of art for teachers and students to deepen their understanding.
This Learning Lab Collection was created to support the The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) National Teachers of the Year 2018 program. CCSSO is a nonpartisan, nationwide, nonprofit organization of public officials who head departments of elementary and secondary education in the states, the District of Columbia, the Department of Defense Education Activity, the Bureau of Indian Education and the five U.S. extra-state jurisdictions. Learn more at https://www.ccsso.org/
Essential Questions to be addressed by this Learning Lab Collection:
- What are some practical tools teachers can use to look closely and reflect about works of art?
- How can we use works of art to prepare students to understand the world and participate in it?
- How do we define global competence and globally competent students?
Tags: #AsiaTeachers; Asian; Asia; Freer|Sackler; Project Zero; Global Competence; Global Competency; Visible Thinking; Artful Thinking; Chalk Talk; See-Think-Wonder; 3Ys; 3-2-1 Bridge; Contemporary Asian Art; China; India; Monkeys; Religion; Architecture; Chinese Cultural Revolution; Xu Bing; Terminal; Subodh Gupta; Sculpture; Lacquer; Wood; Brass
This teacher's guide provides portraits and analysis questions to enrich students' examination of Edgar Allan Poe, an American poet and author known for his stories of mystery, horror, and the macabre. 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 Edgar Allan Poe wanted to be seen, or how others wanted him to be seen? Consider for what purpose these portraits were created (such as the photograph, the stamp, the painting, etc.).
- Having read one of his works, does the portrait capture your image of Edgar Allan Poe? Why, or why not?
- If you were creating your own portrait of Edgar Allan Poe, what characteristics would you emphasize, and why?
Keywords: boston, massachusetts, ma, baltimore, maryland, md, allen, gothic, raven, tell tale heart
This teaching collection gives an introduction to e-textiles, which incorporates sewing with circuitry. Students will first learn the basics LED circuitry, then create their very own wearable tech. Extension activities include creating paper circuits with magnetic copper tape and magnetic "throwies".
This is one of 5 activities used in the Lenovo Week of Service event.
Photographs are the entry point to help students think critically about the nature of community in America's urban environments of the 1960s and 1970s. The exhibition introduced here, after which this collection is titled, features Latino artists who "turn a critical eye toward neighborhoods that exist on the margins of major cities like New York and Los Angeles." Smithsonian American Art Museum Curator E. Carmen Ramos has said that the exhibition was meant to explore the artists' complex vision of life in the urban environment, juxtaposing both a sense of unwelcoming urban neglect with a strong sense of community.
Included here are photographs from the exhibition, a bilingual video with the curator, the "Step In - Step Out - Step Back" Thinking Routine from Harvard's Project Zero Global Thinking Strategies, some links to Smithsonian American Art Museum supporting exhibition materials, including the exhibition webpage, a blog post, a link to Piri Thomas's book after which the exhibition was titled, and footage from a poetry reading at the museum.
Teachers and students can use these photographs in a variety of ways - to explore the work of individual artists, to compare the works of different artists, and to look as a whole at the exhibition and extract deeper meaning about "the urban crisis" of America's urban environments in the 1960s and 1970s.
Keywords: El Barrio, New York City, Urban Crisis
Plains Native people have always depicted star images on their clothing, tipis, and containers.
Formative Task: In a class discussion list three ways Western cultures think about stars. Use this collection to discover what stars mean to the Lakota and other Native people.
Summative Performance Task: Use the star quilt pattern to create a symbolic quilt that represents your school.
This collection was created as an introduction to Korea and its culture by focusing on one object in the Freer/Sackler Museum. "Water dropper in the form of a duck." Interdisciplinary lesson for Media (information literacy, research skills), Art (calligraphy), and Music (children’s songs).
In this collection, beautiful celadon ceramic pieces are used to help students explore the art of Celadon. While learning more about the ceramics students will also
explore the following things: kingdoms, personal objects of value, burial practices, cultural similarities and differences, religious and ceremonial pieces, political influence, kings and noble men, dynasties, artistry, skilled craftsmanship, treasures, geography and the continent of Asia.
This collection is not comprehensive but hopefully will serve as a starting point to encourage students to research and study more about some aspect of Asian-related ceramics, arts, geography, history, cultures, customs or trade . Hopefully it will encourage interest and value in field trips to Museums such as the Smithsonian Freer Gallery, as well as short-term /long-term study abroad trips to Asian countries.
This Learning Lab collection was made to support teachers and educators participating in the "Exploring Latinx Artists from the Frost Art Museum Collection" Workshop, to reflect on their experience. This program received Federal support from the Latino Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Latino Center.
This workshops is organised by the Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum and the Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access, and aims at sharing digital resources and tools for the classroom available from the Smithsonian Learning Lab (learninglab.si.edu). During the workshop, co-facilitated by Dr Antonia Liguori (Loughborugh University, UK) and Dr Philippa Rappoport (SCLDA), participants will learn how to create a lesson plan using digital resources and how to enhance their students' learning experience through Digital Storytelling.
In particular this collection represents an introduction on how to apply Digital Storytelling within the Learning Lab as a teaching strategy and a self-reflective tool to stimulate active and deep learning.
You will find here:
- a short ice-breaker activity to start shifting from a cognitive appreciation of art to a personal connection to museum objects;
- some examples of digital stories made by other educators during previous Digital Storytelling workshops 'embedded' in the Learning Lab;
- a description of the Digital Storytelling process, with templates for storyboarding and a few tips for audio and video editing;
- some prompts to start drafting a script for the Digital Story that will be made in a following workshop.
Established in 1962, the NASA Artists Cooperation Program gave several artists unrestricted access to several NASA facilities. The goal was to communicate the emotional tone and the cultural significance of space exploration.
This collection uses the "Connect Extend Challenge" visible thinking strategy developed by Project Zero at Harvard University. This strategy encourages students to make connections between new ideas and prior knowledge. It also encourages them to make a personal connection to an artwork or topic.
Observe and discuss the first image as a class. Use the "Connect Extend Challenge" to discuss the image as a class. Ask the following:
- How is the artwork or object connected to something you know about?
- What new ideas or impressions do you have that extended your thinking in new directions?
- What is challenging or confusing? What do you wonder about?
Provide any background knowledge that enhances the conversation, using the metadata information about the NASA Artists Cooperation Program.
Next, divide the students into 4 groups. Have them use the same questions to discuss one of the 4 images that deals the Apollo 11 launch. Wrap-up the discussion by having each group share out key thoughts and responses. Repeat the same process with the 4 images that represent Mission Control (note, Mission Control Images are from a selection of Apollo missions).
Finally, students should choose one of the final 4 images to investigate, using the "Connect Extend Challenge" to guide their exploration. Their work could be shared verbally in a paired group, or written as a personal essay.
This collection of resources uses oral histories as well as photographs and articles to explore race relations and the impact of Executive Order 10925 at NASA. Signed by President John F. Kennedy on March 6, 1961, EO 10925 required government contractors to "take affirmative action to ensure that applicants are employed and that employees are treated during employment without regard to their race, creed, color, or national origin."
Resources in this collection - photographs and articles as well as oral histories - are compiled to supplement the SITES traveling exhibit Destination Moon. This collection is not comprehensive; instead, it provides a launching point for further research.
This collection is closely associated with the "Destination Moon" traveling exhibit. For more information see https://airandspace.si.edu/exh...
This collection explores regional contractors that contributed to the Apollo Program. Union Carbide, North American Aviation, and RCA are just three of the many private firms that contributed goods and services to NASA during the race to put a man on the Moon.
Have students examine the map of NASA contractors. Ask:
- What companies do you know?
- Which are closest? Farthest away?
- What do you wonder about these companies? Their locations?
Have students investigate the images in the collection. Discuss:
- What do you see? What do you think about that?
- What types of products or materials were needed on the Apollo mission?
- How did companies take advantage of their association with Manned Spaceflight?
Using the map, encourage students to find items produced by other manufacturers on this database by searching the manufacturer name. Compare the products associated with different companies - what types of products do they see, and what types of products are missing? Are there advantages to having certain things produced closer to the launch site? What types of items could be produced farther away?
Invite students to find other Apollo-related advertisements from the period using the Internet. What can be said about these advertisements?
Invite students to create their own advertisement based on the items they find here, as well as research about the NASA-contracted company.
A collection of resources related to Thomas Jefferson and the signing of the Declaration of Independence. It can be edited or analyzed from a number of POVs.
This collection provides opportunities for students to uncover the complexity behind symbols found in art and artifacts. Curiosity and wonderment are sparked as students use close looking strategies to precisely describe what they see. Students can then apply these findings to reveal a deeper meaning behind the symbols and the identities of the designer and users. Students will be inspired to create their own stamps as they explore how symbols share messages and bridge connections to people and diverse cultures.
Featuring postage stamps from the National Postal Museum's collection, Cultivating Communication: Famous Gardeners was created in conjunction with Smithsonian Gardens. Each stamp relates to either a historic or fictional famous gardener, or garden-lover. Teacher participants in the professional development seminar, "Cultivating Communication" (July 10, 2018) were encouraged to use this collection as a launching pad for a classroom activity related to the Smithsonian Gardens' program, Community of Gardens. #NPMteacherprograms
Keywords: gardener, garden, garden-lover, nature-lover, naturalist, botany, botanist, horticulture, landscape architect, outdoor adventurer, wilderness explorer, national parks, environmentalist, American artist, American author, American poet, children's literature, pop culture, Hollywood icon, American president, First Lady.
This collection highlights the Creative Questioning thinking routine from Project Zero. Students will watch a video clip about the Great Wall of China and generate questions they have about the topic. Then, they will use the question starters to improve and expand upon their questions. Finally, they will choose one of their questions as the starting point for further research.
tag: Great Wall, China, military, inquiry
This unit explores different historical artifacts and the stories they tell. Students will investigate a range of objects, ranging from prescriptions to buffalo hides sourced from different Smithsonian collections.
Guiding Questions: How do humans shape the narrative of History? Whose History is being told? Is it possible to have multiple versions of the “past”?
The collection consists of 5 sets of artifacts, connected by some aspect such as culture, time period, event or movement. However, these objects each tell a very different story.
Working individually, in pairs or in small groups, students choose a set to explore. The students spend time quietly and carefully looking at the sources and investigate what they can tell us about our world, both locally and globally. This activity encourages students to reveal the multiple layers of meaning in an artifact from the most visible story to what it helps us to understand about the lives of our fellow human beings.
Students can share their ideas in pairs, or small groups, before coming together as whole class to share their findings.
Time: 40-60 minutes
As a follow up activity, students reflect on what new connections and information they discovered, new ideas that came to light, and what they found puzzling.
Students can complete the handout individually, in pairs or groups.
Time: 30-50 minutes depending on the length of the follow up discussion.
It might be interesting for students to watch the brief video included, where anthropologist Candace Green and curator Emil Her Many Horses, discuss the Lakota Winter Count as a form of historical record.
The duration of the video is just under 5 minutes.
For more information about the thinking routines visit:
This Learning Lab collection has been created to support the 2018 National History Day theme, Conflict and Compromise. Utilizing portraits and other resources from the National Portrait Gallery, this collection is organized by Topics within the Conflict and Compromise theme.
Be sure to check out the following at the end of the collection:
-Reading Portraiture Guide for Educators highlights close looking strategies that can be used with the portraits listed
-Conflict and Compromise In History Theme Book from National History Day 2018
This collection examines artwork paired with both primary and secondary sources that illustrates the complications of mobilizing the American homefront between 1942-1945.