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Found 6,386 Collections


Investigating the Layers of a Korean Buddhist Sculpture

This Learning Lab Collection focuses on a single Buddhist object from Korea. Students will formulate questions about a Buddhist work of art from Korea using Project Zero's Layers Visible Thinking Routine.  They will investigate answers to their questions by researching the exhibition website and engaging with various interactives and digital resources provided.  

Tags:  Art; Buddhism; Korea; Project Zero; research; National Museum of Korea

About the exhibition:

Sacred Dedication:  A Korean Buddhist Masterpiece
September 21, 2019–March 22, 2020
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery

A single object—a beautiful gilt wood sculpture of Gwaneum, the bodhisattva of compassion and the most popular deity in Korean Buddhism—is the focus of this loan exhibition from the National Museum of Korea. Carved in the late Goryeo period (918–1392), this crowned image is now known to be the oldest surviving gilded wood figure in an informal pose. Its posture, with one leg raised and the other lowered, is associated with the deity’s dwelling place, where he sits calmly on rocks above the crashing waves of the sea. The same subject in a similar pose was common in devotional paintings, such as the hanging scroll of Suwol Gwaneum bosal (Water-Moon Avalokiteshvara) now in the collection of the Freer Gallery.

Sacred texts and potent symbolic objects were sealed inside this hollow religious sculpture when it was first placed into worship in the thirteenth century. The practice of adding dedication material to a Buddhist sculpture during consecration ceremonies was believed to transform it into a living body. Recent research conducted by the National Museum of Korea provides new information about this rare sculpture, its hidden contents, and the special rituals that surrounded image consecration in Korea centuries ago.

We thank our colleagues at the National Museum of Korea for sharing their research and facilitating this exhibition.

Freer and Sackler Galleries

PBA Example Project: HG Wells's Time Machine and Shelley's Frankenstein

This is an example collection for a project on Time Travel.   For this collection, I'm using artifacts from Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, so that I do not inspire my students to borrow my content.  I want them to see this collection as an inspiration, not as a direct analogue. 

Eric Lister

Not So Still Life

#ethnicstudies #UShistory

Malin Lindelow

Using Authentic Resources: American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages 2019

This collection gathers resources to help language students understand how art reflects culture, increase their language proficiency, and develop global competence and 21st century skills.  This collection includes artwork relevant to exploring and learning about cultural topics, guiding questions to help with lesson planning, Project Zero Global Thinking Routines, and the Sustainable Development Goals. 

The second resource in this collection gives instructions for use and was specifically created to guide participants' collection development during the presentation People, Place, and Time: How Art Reflects Culture - Smithsonian Collections.  A collection containing the full presentation slides is available here.

This presentation was given at the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) 2019 Annual Convention and World Languages Expo on November 23, 2019. Presenters: Marcela Velikovsky (Bullis School), Tess Porter (Smithsonian Center for Learning and Digital Access), and Vicky Masson (Norwood School).

Vicky Masson

My ethnic studies musings

This collection was started as a way to share resources related to Mexican American Studies.  It has now morphed into a larger collection for anyone interested in ethnic studies.  It is still very much a work in progress.

Rubina Pantoja

Preventing the Dodo: Unveiling Animal Conservation Stories

What stories do the animals on the American Trail at the Smithsonian's National Zoo tell? Students will use the Project Zero Global Thinking Routine Unveiling Stories to uncover and consider the complexity around conservation. I asked students to consider more than just what is the initial story. I wanted to know what they thought the human and world stories might be. With the success of these animals I wanted students to also consider what the new and untold stories that might remain. The Unveiling Stories thinking routine is a great way to explore the complicated stories of the gray wolf, bald eagle, beaver,  North American river otter, and wood duck. #goglobal

Ellen Rogers

symbol time line

Olivia O'Connell



Rachael Lim


ooga booga
Andrew Tai

Teatro Campesino

How does art reflect culture?


Lindsey Leeper

The Time Machine Project

Project: Machines- Owen Gilgun

Owen Gilgun

Nike Pro Hijab

The Nike Pro Hijab, featured in Contemporary Muslim Fashions exhibition at Cooper Hewitt in the spring of 2020, is a hijab developed by Nike specifically for sport performance. 

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum

The Pony Express

 The Pony Express was a mail service delivering messages, newspapers, and mail.
Officially operated as the Leavenworth and Pike's Peak Express Company of 1859. In 1860 it became the Central Overland California and Piles Peak Express company . It was founded by , William H. Russell, Alexander Majors, and William B. Waddell, all of whom were well-known in the shipping business. 
During The Pony Expresses 19 months of operation, it reduced the time for messages to travel between the Atlantic and Pacific coasts to about 10 days.  From April 3, 1860 to October 1861, it became the West's most direct means of east–west communication before the Telegraph was established. It was important for connecting the new state of California with the rest of the United States.
 Click on it picture to view.

Lanette Quillian

Counter Culture

The counter culture emerged in the 1960 and died down in the 70s.  The people who joined were known for opposing the social norms. They were against the Vietnam war and striving for peace. They supported such things as LGBT or loving all. A lot of the people who joined this group had to do it at the expense of being shamed from their family. This new group strayed from their parents norms in regards to racism, sexual morals, women's rights creating their own way of thinking revolving around the idea of " Loving All".  This divided the county even more. The people who were in the group are what we would call hippies. Wearing flowy, bright clothing. People who were in this group often did psychedelic drugs. When on these drugs they would perform dances as a form of entertainment. Another form of entertainment was music festivals. The most famous one was the Woodstock in White Lake, New York with over 300,000 people.  The Rolling Stone and The Beach Boys are some examples of the music they enjoyed.  The government tried to put a stop to this group by creating restrictions on gatherings, the drug LSD, and the media posted by being too rated "R". Hence why it started to die down in the 70s. These photos captured the escence of the standard hippie and the joy they had. They were spirtually free and you can see that through these photos.

Breannah Diaz

Mexican Art & U.S. History: Carmen Lomas Garza

This collection will provide an opportunity for students to analyze artwork, read background information, and connect art with historical events. At the heart of this activity is artwork created by Latino artist Carmen Lomas Garza. These paintings reflect the experiences of Garza's family and Latino life in 1980s America. In addition to image analysis, teachers could extend an opportunity for students to identify and discuss connections between Garza's art and the Mexican American experience from the 1960s to the present. This collection includes:

  • A timeline of U.S.-Mexican American relations
  • Video/audio of Reagan signing the 1986 Immigration Reform Control Act
  • And an overview of immigration reform via ABC-CLIO (requires subscription). 

#ethnicstudies #LISDSS

Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills Connections #TEKS

  • 24A describe how the characteristics of and issues in U.S. history have been reflected in various genres of art, music, film, and literature;

Angela King

Hispanic Women

What's missing in today's history books, especially in the Southwest? Quite a lot actually.  Today's social studies textbooks reflect the standards each state has adopted and in many cases, when it comes to learning about people who have sacrificed their lives or changed the way we live here in United States, there are groups of people who are missing.  Even in 2019, more than 50 years after the Civil Rights Movement, there are only minimal standards acknowledging the contributions of people of color.  In Texas, women are marginally covered with the standards, and women of color even less so.  In elementary grades, only five Hispanic women are included within the standards, most of them being in 4th grade Texas history.  Only two are a part of the middle school state curriculum, both in 7th grade Texas history.  In high school, Dolores Huerta and Sonia Sotomayor are the only Hispanic female individuals judged worthy to be included although the Las Madre's e la Plaza de Mayo, a group of Argentinian women are included in the world history standards.

This collection seeks to provoke thinking about the lives, contributions and sacrifices of Hispanic women in American history.  

#EthnicStudies #BecauseOfHerStory

Leticia Hallmark

World War II - Japanese American Internment

Collection of topical resources to be used for teaching Japanese American Internment according to TEKS (7C)  The student is expected to analyze major issues of World War II, including the internment of Japanese Americans as a result of Executive Order 9066.... #EthnicStudies

Kathleen Reid

Early Mesoamerican Cultures

This collection looks at the art, architecture, and religion within the early Mesoamerican  groups. 

#Maya #Aztec #ethnicstudies

Sara Mahoney

Introducing Hokusai: Mad about Painting

This Learning Lab Collection introduces three themes from the Hokusai:  Mad about Painting exhibition and provides works of art, classroom activities, and discussion questions associated with each theme. 

Tags:  #AsiaTeachers; Be a Reporter; customs; daily life; dragons; Edo; Great Wave; Hokusai; Japan; nature; New Year; personification; poetry; power; Project Zero; Mount Fuji; See Think Wonder; Step Inside; symbols; thunder; woodblock print

About the exhibition:

Hokusai:  Mad about Painting
November 23, 2019–November 8, 2020
Freer Gallery of Art, galleries 5–8

The Japanese artist Katsushika Hokusai (1760–1849) is widely recognized for a single image—Great Wave Off the Coast of Kanagawa, an icon of global art—yet he produced thousands of works throughout his long life. Charles Lang Freer recognized the artist’s vast abilities before many other collectors, and he assembled the world’s largest collection of paintings, sketches, and drawings by Hokusai. In commemoration of the centennial of Freer’s death in 1919, and in celebration of the Summer Olympics in Tokyo in 2020, the Freer Gallery presents a yearlong exploration of the prolific career of Katsushika Hokusai. Works large and small are on view, from six-panel folding screens and hanging scrolls to paintings and drawings. Also included are rare hanshita-e, drawings for woodblock prints that were adhered to the wood and frequently destroyed in the process of carving the block prior to printing. Among the many featured works are Hokusai’s manga, his often-humorous renderings of everyday life in Japan. Together, these works reveal an artistic genius who thought he might finally achieve true mastery in painting—if he lived to the age of 110.

Freer and Sackler Galleries

Making Cultural Connections in Pre-AP World Geography

This adapted collection includes resources for ninth-grade Pre-AP World Geography students. After studying the aspects of culture in the Human Geography unit, students will focus on the culture of the United States and Canada in Unit 4. 

Using the collection, students will explain the impact of immigration on American culture. Students will also develop questions and research how their ethnic groups and culture are reflected in the art and history of North America and connected to regions of the world.


Melissa Blohm

NCSS 2019: Teaching for Global Competence through American Art

Resources used during a session at the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) annual conference in Austin, TX on November 23, 2019.

Essential Question: How can visual art nurture students' capacities to take informed action as citizens in a complex, interconnected world?

Phoebe Hillemann

Los Angeles Latino Families Photo Project

The Los Angeles Latino Families Photo Project was launched at the UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center (CSRC) spring 2012. It is an extension of an earlier initiative launched in 2007 to combat the invisibility of the Mexican American contribution to Los Angeles and California history predating the social movements of the 1960s and 1970s within textbooks, trade, and academic books and articles. With the generous support of the John Randolph Haynes and Dora Haynes Foundation, the CSRC was able to digitize close to 3,000 images from the Edward R. Roybal Papers and the Yolanda Retter Vargas Collection of Orphan Photographs. The first collection documents Edward Roybal’s public service career from the 1940s to the 1990s as a Los Angeles city councilman and a U.S. congressman. The second was collected by the previous librarian, Yolanda Retter-Vargas, who found the photographs at various flea markets. This collection consists of “orphan” photographs—images with no provenance information. They appear to belong to six families. Both collections have been completed and are available on the UCLA Digital Library. 

After completing this project we quickly realized that Los Angeles Latino history is incomplete without the stories of its citizens. The Los Angeles Latino Families Photo Project was developed as a way to fully capture the complexity of this city’s history as well as address the issue of preservation through the digitization of vulnerable image-based collections. The photographs found in this particular collection were digitized and preserved during a Friends of the Library workshop held at the Chicano Studies Research Center spring 2012. They highlight the day-to-day lives of Latinos and Latinas living in Los Angeles over time. They document their families' histories and cultures capturing their movements between the United States and Latin America. One of the project’s goals is to provide the opportunity for community members to contribute additional photographs and information for the archival record.

#LatinoHAC #ethnicstudies

Rubina Pantoja
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