Found 1,382 Learning Lab Collections
Looking closely at the women married to our President's. Learn more about the individuals and the contributions they themselves made. Using Learning to Look Strategies to go beyond the pretty faces.
This collection contains images, lithographs, and written documents pertaining to the period of Reconstruction. Reconstruction marks the period in American history beginning in 1863 and lasting through 1877. This collection will help to better understand the role Reconstruction played in re-establishing race relations and enfranchising African Americans, but also the struggles African Americans faced in upholding their rights. People who view this collection will be able to analyze and respond to the question "Was Reconstruction successful?" #TeachingInquiry
This collection brings together photographs, objects, films, articles and more - pinpoint milestones in the African American Civil Rights Movement. Section topics include: Brown vs. Board; Freedom Rides; the Selma to Montgomery March; and additional figures and events in the African American Civil Rights Movement. Each section is introduced with a standalone text tile that summarizes the resources held within the section.
By no means is this collection comprehensive; instead, it provides a launching point for further research.
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 explores a number of Supreme Court cases all looking at the rights students have in the American public school system. Students will encounter these court cases through primary and secondary sources, videos, photographs, podcasts, and historical objects. At the end of the lesson, students should be able construct an argument based off the compelling question "Are student rights protected in school?"
The Code of Hammurabi is a well-preserved Babylonianlaw codeof ancient Mesopotamia, dating back to about 1754 BC (Middle Chronology). It is one of the oldest deciphered writings of significant length in the world. The sixth Babylonian king, Hammurabi, enacted the code, and partial copies exist on a seven and a half foot stone steleand various clay tablets. The code consists of 282 laws, with scaled punishments, adjusting "an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth" as graded depending on social status, of slave versus free man. The code was discovered by modern archaeologistsin 1901, and its editio princeps translation published in 1902 by Jean-Vincent Scheil. This nearly complete example of the code is carved into a basalt stele in the shape of a huge index finger 2.25 m (7.4 ft) tall. The code is inscribed in the Akkadian language, using cuneiform scriptcarved into the stele.
Something You should Know About Hammurabi's Code
In the 18th century B.C., the Babylonian King Hammurabi fashioned a compendium of 282 laws that set standards of conduct and justice for his empire in ancient Mesopotamia. Etched on an imposing seven-and-a-half-foot diorite pillar, or stele, the commands covered everything from property rights and criminal behaviour to slavery and divorce, and promised brutal punishments for all who disobeyed. These famous pre-Biblical laws helped shape Babylonian life in Hammurabi's time, but their influence would echo throughout the ancient world for over a millennia. Below, find out more about the fascinating history behind one of antiquity's most important legal codes.
It's not the earliest known code of laws.
Hammurabi's dictates are often cited as the oldest written laws on record, but they were predated by at least two other ancient codes of conduct from the Middle East. The earliest, created by the Sumerian ruler Ur-Nammu of the city of Ur, dates all the way back to the 21st century B.C., and evidence also shows that the Sumerian Code of Lipit-Ishtar of Isin was drawn up nearly two centuries before Hammurabi came to power. These earlier codes both bear a striking resemblance to Hammurabi's commands in their style and content, suggesting they may have influenced one another or perhaps even derived from a similar source.
The Code included many bizarre and gruesome forms of punishment.
Hammurabi's Code is one of the most famous examples of the ancient precept of "lex talionis," or law of retribution, a form of retaliatory justice commonly associated with the saying "an eye for an eye." Under this system, if a man broke the bone of one his equals, his own bone would be broken in return. Capital crimes, meanwhile, were often met with their own unique and grisly death penalties. If a son and mother were caught committing incest, they were burned to death; if a pair of scheming lovers conspired to murder their spouses, both were impaled. Even a relatively minor crime could earn the offender a horrific fate. For example, if a son hit his father, the Code demanded the boy's hands be "hewn off."
The laws varied according to social class and gender.
Hammurabi's Code took a brutal approach to justice, but the severity of criminal penalties often depended on the identity of both the lawbreaker and the victim. While one law commanded, "If a man knock out the teeth of his equal, his teeth shall be knocked out," committing the same crime against a member of a lower class was punished with only a fine. Other rank-based penalties were even more significant. If a man killed a pregnant "maid-servant," he was punished with a monetary fine, but if he killed a "free-born" pregnant woman, his own daughter would be killed as retribution. The Code also listed different punishments for men and women with regard to marital infidelity. Men were allowed to have extramarital relationships with maid-servants and slaves, but philandering women were to be bound and tossed into the Euphrates along with their lovers.
The Code established a minimum wage for workers.
Hammurabi's Code was surprisingly ahead of its time when it came to laws addressing subjects like divorce, property rights and the prohibition of incest, but perhaps most progressive of all was a stipulation mandating an ancient form of minimum wage. Several edicts in the Code referenced specific occupations and dictated how much the workers were to be paid. Field laborers and herdsmen were guaranteed a wage of "eight gur of corn per year," and ox drivers and sailors received six gur. Doctors, meanwhile, were entitled to 5 shekels for healing a freeborn man of a broken bone or other injury, but only three shekels for a freed slave and two shekels for a slave.
The Code includes one of the earliest examples of the presumption of innocence.
While it's notorious for its catalogue of barbaric punishments, Hammurabi's Code also set several valuable legal precedents that have survived to this day. The compendium is among the earliest legal documents to put forth a doctrine of "innocent until proven guilty." In fact, the Code places the burden of proof on the accuser in extreme fashion when it says, "If any one bring an accusation of any crime before the elders, and does not prove what he has charged, he shall, if it be a capital offense charged, be put to death." The Code also includes a modern take on judicial procedures.
Historians are still unsure of the role the Code played in Babylonian culture.
Hammurabi's Code offers a valuable glimpse into what daily life in ancient Babylonia might have been like, but just how the laws functioned in society is still up for debate. The statutes could have been a list of amendments to an even earlier and more expansive set of general laws, but they might also have acted as a set of judicial precedents compiled from real world cases. Some historians have even argued the Code was not a working legal document at all, but rather a piece of royal propaganda created to enshrine Hammurabi as a great and just ruler.
The Code endured even after Babylon was conquered.
Hammurabi's empire went into decline after his death in 1750 B.C. before unraveling entirely in 1595 B.C., when a Hittite army sacked Babylon and claimed its riches. Nevertheless, Hammurabi's Code proved so influential that it endured as a legal guide in the region for several centuries, even as rule over Mesopotamia repeatedly switched hands. Copying the Code also appears to have been a popular assignment for scribes-in-training. In fact, fragments of the laws have been found on clay tablets dating to as late as the 5th century B.C.—more than 1,000 years after Hammurabi's reign.
The laws weren't rediscovered until the 20th century.
Hammurabi's edicts were a fixture of the ancient world, but the laws were later lost to history and weren't rediscovered until 1901, when a team of French archeologists unearthed the famous diorite stele at the ancient city of Susa, Iran, once the seat of the Elamite Empire. Historians believe the Elamite King Shutruk-Nahhunte plundered the four-ton slab during a 12th century B.C. raid on the Babylonian city of Sippar and then brought it to Susa as a treasure of war. Shutruk-Nahhunte is thought to have erased several columns from the monument to make space for his own inscription, but no text was ever added. Today, the pillar is kept on display at the Louvre Museum in Paris.
This is a topical collection of resources related to the fight to end apartheid. Teachers and students can use this collection to explore strategies used to fight against apartheid as well as famous leaders in the fight. Strategies include economic sanctions, boycotts, and divestment, raising awareness through artists and musicians, nonviolent protest, armed resistance, and external political pressures on the South African government. This is a work-in-progress based on the digitized materials within the Smithsonian Learning Lab's collection--it is not meant to be wholly definitive or authoritative. Think of it as a starting point for further inquiry!
Possible student activities include:
-researching one strategy of resistance and/or one well-known leader in depth.
-drawing comparisons between political organizations and movements like the ANC, PAC, Black Consciousness Movement, and United Democratic Front.
-creating a timeline of resistance to apartheid.
-debating the use of armed resistance and "sabotage."
-interviewing adults who may remember the end of apartheid.
-drawing comparisons between the civil rights movement in the United States and the anti-apartheid movement.
-choose 1-3 events and make a case for them as turning points in the fight against apartheid. What makes these events so significant?
tags: apartheid, South Africa, Mandela, Tutu, Huddleston, Soweto, townships, Sharpeville, Defiance Campaign, Biko
Considering all of the information you have analyzed today, respond to the following prompt in writing. Be sure to cite specific examples in your response to support your argument.
PROMPT: Write a response analyzing why Bill Clinton was successful in winning the presidency over the incumbent George H.W. Bush in 1992.
Soap is a common household chemical used around the world. Using the See/Think/Wonder visible thinking tool, this collection explores:
- The history of soap,
- Why Ivory soap floats,
- Why soap can be used for cleaning, and
- How is soap made.
Through photographs, text, videos, interviews, a map & a 3D model, students can explore the history of the oldest surviving American naval vessel, the Gunboat Philadelphia, which is in the permanent collections of the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History. The Philadelphia (1776) played an important role during the Revolutionary War. The first five resources in this collection show the discovery and preservation of the sunken boat, while the last three offer more information on its historical significance.
This could be used by students to consider what each type of media reveals. What information can you learn from the single resource? From the collection of media combined? What more context is needed?
This collection was created to align with with the Weikers Family collection and provides general context about life in Germany for a Jewish family in the 1930s and their eventual resettlement to the United States. The artifacts in the collection are not necessarily specific to the Weikers family, but give some idea of how others might have shared similar experiences.
Tags: Nazi Germany, Holocaust era, primary sources, Pittsburgh
Trail of Tears
Georgia Performance Standard: SS8H5
This is a collection of six objects, from the National Museum of American History, that were selected by museum staff for what they reveal about the Jewish American experience.
Ever since their first appearance in the 1939 release of The Wizard of Oz, Dorothy's ruby slippers quickly became one of the most iconic pieces of pop culture. But, did you know that other notable events also took place in 1939? In the same year that Dorothy walked down the Yellow Brick Road while wearing the ruby slippers, Germany invaded Poland, Batman first appeared in comics, Lou Gehrig retired from the New York Yankees, and much more. Explore this collection of images to witness key moments from 1939.
Can items in our life serve as both tools and toys depending on how we look at them and our needs?
This collection was created in conjunction with the National Portrait Gallery's 2016 Learning to Look Summer Teacher Institute.
The Jumping In lesson helps students to use their creativity in different ways using their five senses (see, hear, touch, taste, and smell). Students will use following sentence starter to help direct students' thinking..
I see, I hear, I touch, I smell, and I taste
The activity can help to exercises their....
Focusing on key details
Asking and answering What, Where, When, When, and How questions
Intro to poetry
The Jumping In lesson is a great way to start poetry and integrating Social Studies and Science. The activity can be done as a whole group discussion, partner work, or independently.
Below you will find a variety of sources that connect to the Industrial Revolution. These sources will aid in your answering of the following guiding questions:
(1) What changes were made in manufacturing? (2) How did society benefit from industrialization? and (3) What were the challenges society faced during industrialization?
At the conclusion of your investigation, you should be able to address in detail the Essential Question: Are the benefits of progress during the Industrial Revolution more significant than the costs?
This collection was made to pair with a learning experience during the November 17th workshop for Pittsburgh teachers working with the Smithsonian Learning Lab. Teachers will visit the Steamboat Arabia exhibit and learn from a Heinz History Center curator about the decisions made and limitations faced when creating an exhibit for visitors to learn from.
Both the online collection and the Heinz History Center exhibit explore the question "How do new innovations in transportation affect American life?"
The collection below contains artifacts and images from the Smithsonian collection that might help students and teachers respond to the question above. Suggested scaffolding questions might include:
- Identify the changes in technology and transportation that occurred between 1800-1850.
- How did these new transportation systems impact the movement and interactions of groups of people, the expansion of trade, and cultural life on the frontier?
- How do the items in this collection compare to what was found during the recovery of the Steamboat Arabia?
Which of these inventions is most innovative and why? Support your views.
This collection is part of my library's research project for 3rd and 4th grade students. Students will explore the history of various Native American tribes to understand how tribes have been impacted by intolerance. This is my library's way of aligning to the Kindness campaign on my campus.
What is the role of art and culture in the expansion of nations or empires? This collection traces the general history of the Mughal Empire and its influence on Indian art. The Mughals were a dynasty of Islamic leaders who conquered India in the 16th and 17th centuries. Their blend of influences and the stylistic preferences of the emperors created a distinct style.
Guiding questions to consider are:
How did the Mughals assert their authority over and create a sense of unity within India?
Why is art so important to powerful leaders, and how can they influence artistic styles?
Tags: religion, culture, syncretism, Islam, Muslim, India, Hindu, cause effect, chronology
A collection of images relating to the Philippine-American War and the subsequent American Occupation of the Philippines.